MY UCLA CHANCELLORSHIP: AN UTTERLY CANDID VIEW
Franklin D. Murphy
Interviewed by James V. Mink
Completed under the auspices
Oral History Program
University of California
Copyright (c) 1976
The Regents of the University of California
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Interview History xi
TAPE NUMBER: I, Side One (October 18, 1973) 1
Nominees for chancellor of UCLA--Murphy ' s
chancellorship at Kansas--Relations with Governor
George Docking- -Battles over budget- -Personal
incidents--Invitation to UCLA from Clark Kerr--
Deciding to leave Kansas--Meeting with UC
regents--Discussing the appointment with
colleagues--Meeting with Kerr--Visiting UCLA--
Meeting the community: the Chandlers--Discussion
with alumni, faculty--The final decision.
TAPE NUMBER: I, Side Two (October 18, 1973) 27
Assumptions as to authority of the chancellor--
Ominous trip to Los Angeles--Choosing assistants--
Paul Dodd vetoed by Kerr--Foster Sherwood--
Charles Young--William Young--Conf licts with
Berkeley: the inauguration ceremony- -Seeking a
secretary for the chancellor--Problems over the
campus switchboard--The budget--Conf lict over a
Slavic languages professor.
TAPE NUMBER: II, Side One (October 18, 1973) 54
The regents: John Canaday's recounting of the
appointment of Clarence Dykstra--Legislative
battles--The medical school, Phil Davis vs.
Jim Corley--Ed Carter's fight for dorm
applications--Kerr attempts to restrict Murphy's
contact with regents--Def ining the role of
the chancellor--Library battles--Kay Kerr's
school for chancellors' wives--And her conflicts
with chancellors' wives--Kerr ' s approach to
university-wide problems--FTE and student-faculty
TAPE NUMBER: II, Side Two (October 19, 1973) 76
Berkeley-UCLA battles: first commencement- -Funds
for chancellors' entertaining--Conf rontation at a
regents' meeting-- Jesse Steinhart as Kerr
supporter--Harry Wellman as Kerr spokesman--
Identifying the problems: president's conflict of
interest--Patterns set by Sproul--Glenn
Seaborg- -Other chancellors--Support of Emil Mrak--
Charter Day episode--A day for UCLA proposed--
Chancellor's role at Charter Day.
TAPE hfUMBER: III, Side One (October 19,1973) 103
Charter Day: Lopez Mateos and Lyndon Johnson at
UCLA--Pauley arranges the event--Kerr clashes
with UCLA people--Earl Bolton assigned to
planning--Kerr accuses Tom Davis of interference--
Kerr refuses to attend, is overruled by Pauley--
Pauley upbraids Kerr and Murphy- -Letters of
appointment for deans: Murphy seeks to include
chancellor's name--Kerr's inadequacy of
communication- -The Berkeley crisis--Strong is
f ired--Berkeley crisis compared with UCLA.
TAPE NUMBER: III, Side Two (October 19,1973) 131
Berkeley riots as against UCLA atmosphere--
The Strong firing--John Saunders forced out--
Regents consider firing Kerr; Murphy opposes--
Kerr remains--Lobbying on Kerr's behalf with
Norton Simon, Phil Boyd--Telling Harry Wellman--
Choosing a new Berkeley chancellor- -Roger Heyns
nominated- -Murphy meets Heyns- -Brief ing Heyns on
chancellors' problems- -Heyns accepts
chancellorship, with conditions--Chancellors
united for budget flexibility--Promotions and
appointments- -Regents support chancellors over
Kerr- -The Reagan-Brown campaign- -Murphy
recommends neutrality; Kerr opposes Reagan.
TAPE NUMBER: IV, Side One (November 15, 1973) 158
Reagan is elected--Kerr is away during budgetary
conferences- -Regents meet, Kerr is asked to
resign--Charles Hitch chosen as Kerr's successor--
Murphy declines the presidency--Ef feet of the
Reagan regime on Murphy's decision to step down--
Actual reason: f atigue--Of fer to be chairman of
the Times-Mirror board--Charles Young succeeds
Murphy--The Byrne Report--Murphy ' s relations with
the Academic Senate--Strengthening the
chancellor's role--Professional school faculty--
Appointments and promotions.
TAPE NUMBER: IV, Side Two (November 15, 1973) 184
Appointments and promotions--The Academic Senate--
The Council of Deans--UCLA Alumni Association:
weakness upon Murphy's arrival--The Davises--Doug
Kinsey as executive secretary- -UCLA Foundation--
Annual giving programs--Murphy ' s background as a
money raiser-- "Targets of opportunity" --
Purchasing the stock of an Israeli bookstore--Ed
Pauley and the pavilion--Private support--
Agreements with President Topping and DuBridge.
TAPE NUMBER: V, Side One (December 6, 1973) 211
Fine arts at UCLA- -Developing a College of Fine
Arts--William Melnitz--Faculty opposition to
artists as opposed to scholars--Heifetz,
Primrose, Piatigorsky refused by Department of
Music--Building an art history library--The
Murphy Sculpture Garden--The Brights--Ethnic art--
Building the collection--Ralph Altman--Acquiring
the Wellcome collection--School of Architecture
and Urban Planning- -George Dudley.
TAPE NUMBER: V, Side Two (December 6, 1973) 238
Professional schools at the University of
[Second Part] (December 26, 1973) 239
Library development--Robert Vosper brought by
Murphy to Kansas, then to UCLA--Collection
development problems--Equalizing book budgets
with Berkeley--Building University Research
Library--Student unrest--Administration Building
sit-in--Ethnic studies programs- -Unrest as cause
of Murphy leaving--Athletics-- J. D. Morgan--
Control to chancellor's of f ice--Of f ice of Public
Affairs--A retrospective glance.
Oral history is the perfect medium for Franklin
Murphy, for he is a notably vocal person. Even in this
transcript you can sense the optimistic timbre of his
voice and the convincing rush of his words. I often had
the impression that he thought in the press of argument and
lively discussion rather than in quiet reflection. He
seemed frequently in the warmth of conversation or in the
midst of an impromptu speech to hear himself suddenly ex-
pressing an opinion or an idea quite as unexpected and
convincing to himself as to his audience. I don't recall
him ever reading a prepared speech; he would have considered
that constricting. The barest of last minute notes suf-
ficed for pointed and compelling public oratory. He would
dictate a letter on an administrative matter if need be,
but he preferred to get you on the phone or corner you
at a cocktail party for an intense business discussion.
Intensity and whirlwind activity were hallmarks of his
style during the almost twenty years that I worked with
him as his university librarian at both the University of
Kansas and UCLA. His remarkable administrative assistant
Hansena Fredrickson put it most aptly when she said somewhere,
as I recall it, that he was the only boss she knew who could
enter a room through two different doors simultaneously;
and I would add, talking forcefully if not fiercely.
Franklin Murphy's remarkable contribution to American
higher education is implicit in this colorful and frank
interview, but it deserves to be stated explicitly. Other
men, but probably not very many, have presided over more
than one university. But very likely no one else has
consecutively taken on two rather subdued or dispirited
universities and in short order pressed them to a national
level of distinction (in UCLA's case even international
distinction) by the sheer force of his personal conviction,
the power of his vocal argument, his utter impatience with
dullness or the second rate, his innate sense of timing,
his political acumen, and his administrative drive. He
gave not just leadership, but more importantly, a strong
sense of pride and heart to both KU and UCLA. I think it
actually the case that both universities were transformed
by Franklin Murphy's personal dynamism; this was not abstract
administrative principles and ability so much as personal
As with most of us, Franklin Murphy used certain symbols
to rally his cause. The "free marketplace of ideas" was
one. Another, as I can especially testify, was that library
quality is the best measuring stick for university distinction.
Both in Lawrence and in Los Angeles he used this symbol
with brilliant success — convincing alumni, the general
public, legislators, and even some narrow faculty members
that a great library, including scarce and valuable books,
is essential to academic quality. And for him this was
no abstract belief. He reads widely, rapidly, and purpose-
fully, and he himself was turned to book collecting, while
he was a student, by a colorful Kansas City antiquarian
bookseller, the late Frank Glenn.
But as is evident in this interview, he has other
passionate interests, particularly in the arts, and he
is always attracted by people or programs that combine
brilliance and enthusiasm with sheer knowledge. When he
found such a combination in a program, such as modern
sculpture or ethnic arts, or in the person of such scholars
as a Donald O'Malley, Lynn White, or Milton Anastos, Murphy
as chancellor could be counted on for an equal measure
of enthusiasm and for generous support, both moral and
The UCLA sculpture garden is most fittingly marked
with his name, as is the music building at the University
of Kansas, for they are true indicators of his enthusiasms.
It is equally fitting that UCLA's administration building
should bear his name. Often such a designation might be
pro forma, but in this case it correctly recalls that
Franklin Murphy gave meaning and power to the office of
chancellor at UCLA, and thus to campus administration, in
a unique and enduring way.
Franklin David Murphy was born January 29, 1916 in
Kansas City, Missouri, the son of a physician father and
a musician mother. After taking his A.B. at the University
of Kansas in 1936, he went on for his M.D. at the University
of Pennsylvania, 1941, where he interned and taught as
an instructor for two years. In 19 46 he returned to his
alma mater, as instructor in the University of Kansas
School of Medicine. Within two years his meteoric admin-
istrative career began, with appointment as dean of the
school in 1948. His drive to carry the skills and
graduates of the school to the small towns and rural com-
munities of Kansas was so successful in all ways, including
political ways, that in 1951 he was called to Lawrence as
chancellor of the university. The story of that career
from 1951 to 1960, as well as the subsequent career at
UCLA as chancellor from 1960 to 1968, is sharply delineated
in this oral history interview. Then his innate sense
of timing shifted him into a different milieu, where I hope
he is equally successful, innovative, demanding, and personally
involved, as chairman of the board and chief executive
officer of the Times-Mirror Corporation.
Director of the
William Andrews Clark
UCLA, 1976 Memorial Library
INTERVIEWER: James V. Mink, University Archivist and
Head, Department of Special Collections, UCLA
Library. BA, MA, History, UCLA; BLS , University
of California, Berkeley; Certificate in Archival
Administration and Preservation, American Univer-
sity, Washington, D.C.
TIME AND SETTING OF INTERVIEW:
Place : The library of Franklin D. Murphy's home
at 419 Robert Lane, Trousdale Estates, Beverly
Dates : October 18, 19, November 15, December 6,
Time of day , length of sessions , and total number of
recording hours: The interviews took place in the
midafternoon, with sessions varying from a half-
hour to two and one-half hours in length. Total
recording time for the interview was eight hours
and fifteen minutes.
Persons present during interviews : Mink and Murphy.
Mrs. (Judy) Murphy was present at the session of
October 19. Joel Gardner was present December 6
to operate the video equipment.
CONDUCT OF THE INTERVIEW:
In preparation, the interviewer perused scrapbooks
and records from the Office of the Chancellor and
sought questions from university associates of Franklin
Murphy, such as Andrew Hamilton, former director of
the Office of Public Information. The interviewer
set out to pursue a biographical framework; however, Dr.
Murphy preferred to begin his memoir at the moment of
his first notification that UCLA would be interested
in bringing him west to be chancellor.
With biographical details filled in and interspersed,
the narrative continued chronologically with the
Murphys' arrival at UCLA and the many problems
faced by the new chancellor in developing autonomy
for the campus. He described in detail his inter-
play with Clark Kerr, president of the University of
California. The interviewer then employed a
subject-by-subject approach to the Murphy years
at UCLA, including the chancellor's particular inter-
est in the professional schools, athletics, alumni
affairs, and the fine arts, especially the Franklin
D. Murphy Sculpture Garden and the Museum of Cultural
History. The interview concluded with a look at
the state of education in the sixties and seventies
and the administrative successor to Dr. Murphy,
Editing was done by Joel Gardner, editor, UCLA Oral
History Program. The verbatim transcript of the
interview was checked against the original tape
recordings and edited for punctuation, paragraphing,
correct spelling, and verification of proper and
place names. The final manuscript remains in the
same order as the original taped material. Words
and phrases inserted by the editor have been brack-
Dr. Murphy reviewed and approved the edited transcript
of his interview. He made minor corrections and de-
letions and also supplied spellings of names that
had not been verified previously.
Joel Gardner compiled the index and prepared other
front matter. Robert Vosper, former university
librarian at both the University of Kansas and UCLA,
wrote the introduction. The manuscript was reviewed
by the interviewer and by Bernard Galm, director of
the Program, before it was typed in final form.
The original tape recordings, video tape segment
(December 6, 1973), and edited transcript of the
interview are in the University Archives and are
available under the regulations governing the use
of noncurrent records of the University.
TAPE NUMBER: I, Side 1
OCTOBER 18, 1973
MINK: I'd understood that you were high on the list of
possible nominees for the presidency of the university.
Did you get any feedback on that?
MURPHY: You mean at the time of Bob Sproul?
MINK: At the time that Bob Sproul retired.
MURPHY: No, as a matter of fact, I knew nothing about
that until I had come to California. It was subsequently
that both Ed Pauley and Ed Carter told me that at the time
Bob retired, they had in the pot my name. They had a lot
of names, but as I recall, when it came down to the wire,
as it were, they had John Gardner; they had myself; I
think they had McGeorge Bundy, who was then dean at
Harvard; and Clark Kerr, who was chancellor at Berkeley
at the time. I was told by Ed Pauley that my name got into
the pot — that Bob Sproul put it in. I also remember that
Ed told me that at that time he had talked to Harry
Truman, who was an old friend of his and an old, old
friend of mine, and that Truman had strongly recommended
that the regents ask me to go to Berkeley as president.
But, I never knew anything about this until after I'd
been at UCLA for several years.
MINK: While you were the chancellor at the University of
Kansas, it was asserted by the press that you were at odds
with Governor [George] Docking.
MURPHY: I was.
MINK: And I wonder if you could give some of the back-
ground of this activity, possibly as a comparison with
some of the things that you faced at UCLA later.
MURPHY: Well, George Docking was a very peculiar man.
He lived in Lawrence, Kansas; he was the head of a bank
there. But he was a man who, over the years, had become
known as a person with an ungovernable temper, an unpre-
dictable quirk about him. You couldn't know which direction
he was going. The result was, in that little university
town of Lawrence — long before I ever got there — he was
never asked by the establishment, as it were, related to
the university, to get on commissions involving the
university. In short, the establishment rejected him,
because he did have this reputation of losing his temper
ungovernably, even physically striking out sometimes.
This was his greatest, greatest problem — his temper.
And people just didn't want him around. He had developed
over the years, therefore, a covert hatred of the univer-
sity, because, as I say, he was never drawn in — to be an
alumni member of the Athletic Board or an alumni member
of the Union Operating Committee or these kinds of things —
whereas the other members of the civilian establishment
in Lawrence who were alumni of the university were in-
volved. In fact, they were the ones that sort of black-
balled him out because of this quirk of temper.
Well, when I became chancellor, I met George. I
went to Lawrence. I got along with him well, George
Docking, and his wife especially. My wife and I were
very fond of his wife, Virginia. As a result of a variety
of political circumstances that are unnecessary to relate.
Docking ran as a Democrat for governor in Kansas and was
elected because the Republicans had torn themselves asunder,
(A Democratic governor in Kansas, until recently, has
been as rare as snow in June in Kansas. This was a freak
thing, politically.) Then almost right after he became
governor (he was elected in the fall) , the university
budget was up for processing, as it were, by the governor's
office before it went to the legislature in January. And
to my amazement and enormous surprise, he took some bitter,
bitter cuts at the budget — unreasonable, unnecessary. I
went up and talked to him about it, asked him what was
up, and was astonished to see this venom pour out: "This
goddamned university, now they'll know who George Docking
is." Really, in effect he was saying, "I'll get back at
you guys after the way you have ignored me" — not me per-
sonally, but the university.
Well, it was clear to me that I had to get major
restorations by the legislature in the budget. And I
had to get them. The legislature was Republican, but
the Republican majority was not quite large enough to
override a governor's veto. So I had to get not only
the Republican majority to agree to these restorations,
but I had to get enough Democrats to vote with the
Republicans to override what I assumed was a predictable
gubernatorial veto. And I set out to do just that. I
mobilized our alumni; I organized the state; I personally
went to friends of mine. I had been a graduate of the
University of Kansas; by that time, many of my classmates
at the university were now publishers, even in the legis-
lature — even some Democrats in the legislature. I reminded
them of our long-standing friendship, and to make a long
story short, the legislature restored these unreasonable
cuts. Docking vetoed them, and they overrode the veto.
And this absolutely infuriated him.
From that point on, he set out really to get me.
It became now not a university vendetta, but a personal
vendetta. The Kansas legislature, even in those days,
met annually. They had biennial sessions for general
legislation and budget, but they also had an annual
budget session. So for four consecutive years, I had to
go through this exercise of getting restorations in our
budget and getting overrides of his veto, involving
getting Democrats to incur his wrath and rage, enough to
override the veto.
Well, this man, as I say, had an ungovernable temper.
There are a niomber of little interesting episodes. For
example, one of his close friends was a man called Louis
Oswald, who was a lawyer in Hutchinson — very close to
Docking and had been, and supported him in his campaigns
and so on. Oswald was a friend of mine, but most of all
he loved the university. One night he related this story
to me: One night he was at the governor's mansion and
he was at dinner with Docking and his wife, Virginia,
and his son. Bob — who is now governor of Kansas, inter-
estingly. There were the four of them at dinner, and
Louis Oswald brought up the question, why didn't George
stop this vendetta? that he was only hurting himself,
that the university was important to the state. His wife
then chimed in and said, "George, Louis is absolutely
right;" and his son said, "Dad, look, enough's enough.
Now let's get on with the business of the state." Where-
upon George got up, face red, absolutely enraged, irrational,
accused them all of letting him down, physically knocked
his wife aside--she fell to the floor — and said that he
never wanted to see any of them again, they were all....
And very profane. Well, this went on, and he gradually
began to attack me publicly and imply that I was dishonest.
When the press pressed him on that he got off it, because
he couldn't prove it.
But this episode happened: A very, very close friend
of mine, Joe McDowell, a Democrat who was a state senator
and very powerful in the state senate — I think he was the
minority leader in the state senate — called me up one
day and said he wanted to see me privately. He was from
Kansas City, Kansas. The next time I was down, I went to
see him. He said, "Franklin, listen. You must be very
careful." I said, "What do you mean?" He said, "Now,
look, I don't know anything about your private life.
But," he said, "anywhere around here, the Middle West,
don't you dare have anybody in your hotel room, any female
who's not your wife." And he said, "Secondly, if you're
in a hotel somewhere — Wichita, Topeka, Garden City or
something — and you hear a knock on the door, don't let
anybody in until you inquire who they are." I said,
"What are you talking about?" He said, "I wouldn't be
at all surprised if some night you hear a knock on the
door and a lady will say, 'Can I come in? I must use your
phone,' or something, close the door, promptly tear her
clothes off, and scream bloody murder." I said, "Joe,
you can't be serious!" He said, "I'm deadly serious."
Another legislator came to me and said, "Look, do
you keep close tabs on your expense accounts when you
travel?" And I said, "Yes. Well, I'm supposed to."
He said, "You'd better keep very close tabs on these ex-
pense accounts. And secondly," he said, "where do you
keep them?" I said, "I keep them in my office file."
"Well," he said, "you'd better make duplicates of these
files, because someday those office files may be rifled,
and there won't be any documentary material; and then
you'll be accused of misuse, and you won't have any docu-
mentary material to furnish us."
So it was at this level. Now, in all fairness, none
of those things ever happened. But these were very res-
ponsible people who were telling me this.
Now, the governor really put pressure. The only way
I could get these vetos overridden — because the university
would have been destroyed, really, the budget cuts he was
playing around with — and the only way I could get any
real support in this regard was to be out in the state
all the time, talking to Rotary clubs and this and that
and the other thing, talking to publishers, because
Docking, with his press conferences, would imply that
money was being wasted at the university. He would take
things out of context. I remember once he talked about
our buying some rare book and implied that we were spending
all this money on only rare books — stuff like that.
Well, in the end, he finally created a situation
which made it clear to me that it was not possible for
me to effectively run the university, because given the
technique of appointing regents , he had proceeded after
four years to get a majority on the board. Now, I was
handicapped not only by his vetoes there, but by his
instructions to the board to do certain things with our
budget. And although I had more success with the board,
I had some real problems with it. So I finally decided
that the best way that the university could be served
would be for me to go on.
Now, I'd made up my mind to this some time before
I got the approaches from UCLA. I will say also — and
I'll come to that in a minute, let me just finish this —
I also had been told by this time that Docking, stupidly,
had put himself in a position of making me a kind of
martyr. The unfairness of his attacks were now beginning
to accumulate--and publishers were telling me this, my
newspaper friends around — but the irrational character
of this man, his hatred, and all the rest of it were
such that he was oblivious to this. It was clear to me
that the only way the university — and, for that matter,
all of higher education in Kansas — could really get going
again, in a sense, would be for Docking to be driven
out of office. He was very popular because he ran on
a program over and over again of cutting taxes and keeping
down expenses and all this sort of thing. Kansas is
basically a conservative state.
So a lot of my friends told me that they hoped I
wouldn't resign, but they always said, "If you resign" —
Docking had announced he was going to run again — "you
don't realize how you have gotten the affection of the
people of the state, the alumni and so on. It's going
to do terrible political violence to him. " So I made
up my mind that some time in 1960, prior to the election,
I was going to quit, resign. Now, I had, at that time,
offers from at least two universities. I'd also been
giving some thought about going back to Washington, because
I'd been importuned from time to time. I wasn't so high
on that, and you know, this had been very erosive to my
quietude; I'd just been under this pressure all this
time. I was part of a group that for many years went
to South America, a group called CHEAR. Clark Kerr was
in that group. And in spring of 1960, there was a meeting
in Chile. Clark took me aside, and he said, "Look, we're
looking for a chancellor at UCLA. The regents have had
a committee and everything, scoured the situation, and
you're their niimber one choice. Would you be interested
in coming to UCLA as chancellor?" I'd always been attracted
to California for a number of reasons — as a symbol, you
know. It seemed to me this was a state which was on the
move, this sort of thing. Although I'd spent most of
my life in the East and Midwest, my sister lived out here.
I had happy memories of college when I had a summer
session at UCLA. I remembered the campus then. I'd
been on it subsequently when Kansas played UCLA at foot-
ball in 1958. Ray Allen was still chancellor. So I
said I'd look at it. And I came out twice, brought Judy,
and finally decided — and I'll get into that later — that
I'd really like to try. And the reasons I was convinced
of this, as I say, I'll get in later.
Well, then I went back and announced the fact that
I was leaving. And there was a huge press uproar. I
think all the press clippings — somebody kept them for
me--the editorials, are over in the library, and you've
got some flavor of the reaction in the state. They
really came down on Docking. I never accused Docking
in any of my statements. I simply said, "I've been
here eight years; I think it's time to go on. It's time
to get some fresh blood." Never mentioned him, because
I really wanted to destroy him in the process of my leaving,
and I knew to get in a fight with him would not help
destroy him. And I say that flatly. I'm sure there was
some personal rancor by that time, but at least my rational-
ization was that this university is going to be in trouble
as long as he's governor. And I was, needless to say,
enormously pleased when he came up for reelection a third
time and was badly beaten. And although I'll take no
credit for it, a lot of the editorial writers at the time
the next morning said that he'd gotten his comeuppance
in a large measure because of this.
It was a strange thing. His wife, during all that
period, would get messages to me and my wife indirectly:
"Look, I don't understand this; I hope you and Judy under-
stand I'm not a part of it; there's nothing I can do."
His son used to get messages to me indirectly. We'd been
fraternity brothers, members of the same fraternity, at
Kansas. Since Bob Docking has been governor in Kansas,
he has been very good to the university. He has, on
more than one occasion, consulted with me about university
requests and some major programs in expanding the medical
school. And I think, in retrospect, I've been, in a way,
helpful to the University of Kansas, just because of Bob's
desire to erase that blot from a Docking family member.
It was a moment in my life that was exciting, because
you were in a real struggle and a battle, and that keeps
your blood boiling. It was very enervating, however.
MINK: You said it was disturbing to your quietude. I
wonder if, just for the record, you would go on now to
describe this transition from Kansas to UCLA: the acti-
vities that you were involved in, the trips, the people
you saw, the bases you touched.
MURPHY: Good. Let me say first of all, however, that
I had gotten into education administration very early in
my life. I became dean of the University of Kansas School
of Medicine when I was thirty-two years old. And the job
there was to really rehabilitate a medical school that had
fallen on bad times because of the fact that there had
been no change in administration for twenty-five years —
no new ideas, no nothing. Immediately I was plunged up
to my ears in legislative manipulation and money-raising
and curricular reconstruction and leading a faculty
toward reforming itself. I left that job after three
years because Dean [D.W. ] Malott, the man who got me into
it, left and went to Cornell; and the regents said, "You've
now got to come and run the whole university." In the pro-
cess of running the University of Kansas, and looking back
on the medical school experience, I suddenly began to
realize that running a large educational institution is
not a lifetime job anymore, that due to the complexity
of the problem and the pressures that current society
makes possible, that a person, in doing innovative things
and in pushing an institution forward, not only must give
out an enormous amount of energy — emotional and physical —
but he also creates scars. And they accumulate. So I
gradually had gotten to the notion that with or without
George Docking, ten or twelve years, I used to say to
myself, is as long as a person ought to stay in one higher
And let me say here in advance why I left UCLA: that
my years at UCLA, nine, had convinced me that my original
suspicions when I was at Kansas were absolutely valid;
that nobody — and I can say this flatly now--in my view,
ought to be in a position of top leadership in a univer-
sity for more than ten and at most twelve years, regardless
of age. I must say that this attitude is growing. Barney
Keeney left Brown on these grounds. The man at Yale at
the moment, Kingman Brewster, has told me plainly this is
clearly his view. Bob Goheen left Princeton well before
his retirement age because of the same attitude. And
that was partly in my mind. I suspect, I repeat, if
George Docking had not been there, within two more years
I would have probably gone elsewhere.
Okay, now UCLA. How did I get here? Well, right
at this time, as I told you, I had been one of the founding
members of something called CHEAR, Commission on Higher
Education in American Republics, a group of university
presidents funded by the Carnegie Corporation, the Rockefeller
Foundation, the Ford Foundation. We'd go every year to
South America, meet with our colleagues down there, and
commonly discuss problems in both hemispheres in higher
education. I'd become chairman of the group and also
head of the executive committee, and I had recommended
that we turn over some of the members, keep a core group.
And one year we turned over some members, and I recommended
that Clark Kerr be added — because Clark had just been
made president of the University of California; maybe
he'd been in there a couple of years. So I got to know
Clark, and Clark got to know me. Furthermore, as Ed
Pauley subsequently told me, he had remembered his conver-
sation with Harry Truman, and a number of the regents
had remembered Bob Sproul ' s recommendation that I succeed
him as president.
Ray Allen, as you know, was fired, and this was
terribly upsetting to the UCLA alumni. You know all
about that bitterness — that Allen should have stood up
and didn't, and Allen was caught between Sproul and the
alumni down here and so forth as a result of that football
scandal and other matters; and I gather he wasn't a strong
man in any event in his leadership qualities, in the sense
that he didn't fight Sproul, as subsequently I had to
fight Kerr, and didn't have a rapport with the regents
and so on. Anyway, the UCLA alumni had made their views
crystal clear to a number of the southern regents. By
God, they didn't want just some guy who'd been around the
University of California system and who had not had the
experience and the guts to push the UCLA position. They
had been conditioned by Sproul ' s destruction of Dykstra;
they had remembered Sproul ' s promises to them about the
authority Dykstra would have which Dykstra never got;
and, in short, they didn't trust Berkeley.
Well, a number of the southern regents, including
Ed Pauley — who, although a Berkeley graduate, was very
much attached to UCLA — accepted this concept in principle
and told Kerr that they wanted a man who could just as well
run the whole university as UCLA, a man of that quality,
that experience, that background and visibility. And
they told Clark that they didn't see anybody within the
system that had that independence and experience and
strength. And the reason they said that was--I learned
all of these things subsequently — Dean McHenry, who was
a UCLA graduate, very much wanted the job, and Dean
McHenry was one of Clark Kerr's closest friends. Their
wives had been roommates at Stanford and so on. McHenry
was shot down immediately by these selfsame regents who
said, "No, he's not run a university."
Clark finally turned to me. I suspect he was direc-
ted to turn to me, really. Now, I don't want to put
Clark down on this, because I don't think he came to me
reluctantly, but I think he was directed to me . I think
Ed Pauley and some others said, "Now, you go talk to this
Well, as I say, Clark raised the subject with me down
in Santiago, at Vina del Mar, at these meetings. I was
going through the views that I indicated I'd had, the
Docking thing, and really getting a little tired of this
thing and seeing no end in sight. And then I came back
from that trip in February with Mrs. Murphy, and we
arrived in Kansas City, and there was one of the greatest
snowstorms in their history--ten, twelve feet of snow on
the ground. We had to fight our way up to Lawrence.
The snow didn't get off the ground; it was one of the
worst winters. And I talked to Judy, and Judy said,
"Look, you call Clark Kerr and say that you'd like at
least to look at it." These were all little things,
really. You know, if you really wanted to stay, to
hell with the snow.
MURPHY: So I said, first of all, that I wanted to come
out myself. And Clark said, "Yes, we want you to, because
I've only asked you on behalf of the regents whether you're
interested in the job, but the regents want to talk to
you." So I came out at the time of the regents' meeting,
which was being held at Berkeley. (In those days, as
you know, they held the meetings on the campus.) And I
met with a committee of regents — Don McLaughlin; Ed
Pauley; Ed Carter; John Canaday; I think Bill Forbes,
who was alumni president and as a result on the regents;
Ellie Heller, no, not Ellie. Anyway, I met with these
regents. And we had a conversation back and forth, and
it was pretty pro forma. They asked me my views on a
lot of things, and I gave it. I, in turn, asked them
their views and how they conceived the chancellorship.
Kerr was present. In retrospect, I realize I was probably
a little too polite in terms of sharpness of my questions
to them. But we parted. Dean McHenry or Harry Wellman
was asked to show me around the Bay Area — the usual kind
of thing. And I left.
Clark called me a few days later and said that the
regents' committee were very impressed with me, and that
he was in a position to proffer the offer. And I said,
"Well, now, Clark, I want to get down to some serious
talking, because I can't accept the offer until I get
some issues clarified. Furthermore, I now want Mrs.
Murphy to come out and take a look at things." So it
was arranged for Judy and I to come out very quietly;
this was supposed not to be known. (Gee, it's interesting
how all these things come back.)
Before I came out, I called some friends of mine
around the country in whom I had great confidence. John
Gardner was one. John, who was then head of the Carnegie
Corporation, I knew knew a great deal about higher edu-
cation and especially California. He was a Stanford and
Berkeley graduate. I called [O. ] Meredith Wilson, who
was then president of the University of Minnesota, a very
close friend. I spoke to Jim Perkins, who was then vice-
president of the Carnegie Corporation; as you know, he
subsequently went on to become president of Cornell. I
spoke to Henry Wriston, who had just retired as president
of Brown University. And I spoke to Harold Dodds, who had
just retired, an old friend of mine who was president of
They all told me the same thing. In effect, they
said, "Franklin, it's an impossible job. And the reason
it's impossible is (a) the chancellor is powerless, rela-
tively. There's a strong tradition in the University of
California of faculty control over the substantive issues
in education on the one hand; and, administratively, the
Berkeley operation runs the place. You're far away, and
the north doesn't like the south anyway. There's a long
history of Berkeley trying to keep UCLA down, both in
administrative as well as the faculty levels, and you will
not have even the administrative independence. So don't
take it." Well, I won't say that that determined me to
take it. That would be dishonest. But it intrigued me.
I couldn't believe that this was the situation.
So I came out. I spent several days. There were
two parts to my coming out that time--me on the one hand;
my wife on the other — and I'll deal with both. As far
as I was concerned, I, first of all, insisted on talking
to two or three regents privately. And I spoke to Ed
Carter, and Ed Pauley, and John Canaday. And I honestly
told them what these people had told me. They said,
"Look. We are in the process of decentralizing adminis-
tration. We think it has been overcentralized. Your
friends are right in terms of the past and maybe even
the present; but we know this has got to change, and we
will support you in your effort to get the kind of author-
ity that matches the responsibility. "
Then I insisted on having a talk with Kerr in this
regard, the same kind of a conversation. In both of those
cases, I made a mistake, in retrospect. I spoke in the
abstract, and I didn't pinpoint who does what, who does
what, who does what. And I got the usual, "Oh, no problem,
Franklin, you'll find a cooperative administration at
Berkeley and all of the authority you need" — quote-unquote—
"you will have." So the question is, who determines what
authority you need? If I came under any illusions or false
premises, in all fairness it was my fault, in that I didn't
sharpen the questions. Unfortunately, I assumed these
were honorable people. I'm not implying they were dishon-
orable, but I didn't realize how far apart their concep-
tion of authority and mine really was. I assumed that
they could understand this, believed it.
The other side of the coin was, my wife came and
went up to the house--Vern Knudsen was ill when she was
here; Mrs. Knudsen was there — and Judy was absolutely
shocked. This great university, and she looked in the
kitchen--there was a stove that ought to belong to the
Smithsonian Institution; an icebox that hardly ran; the
furniture was run down; this and that. And she asked
Mrs. Knudsen about this, and Mrs. Knudsen made very little
effort to convince Judy that this was the place to come
to. Whether it was because she was enjoying being the
chancellor's wife for a while, I don't know.
MINK: That was one year. And they knew in the beginning
that it was one year.
MURPHY: Yeah. Well, whatever reason, she kept saying,
"We don't get anything we ask for." And Judy came to
me; she said, "Well, Franklin, if I'm supposed to operate
even in a larger milieu, the way we tried to do in Lawrence
with students and faculty and the community, this is impos-
sible." I checked with Hansena Frederickson, and I dis-
covered that in this large, well-financed university, the
budget for entertainment was less than the one I had at
Kansas. There was none, practically. So much for that.
That side of it looked not that good.
Then I decided I needed to know what the community
wanted, because I had discovered in Kansas that in order
to do the things there that had to be done, I had to have
the community. I had to have the community believing
in the importance of the university and supporting it
and working for it, and in turn you had to therefore
communicate with the community. So I insisted on going
and having a talk with Mrs. [Dorothy] Chandler, who was
then a relatively new member of the board, and Norman
Chandler, neither of whom I'd ever met. I had a wonder-
ful conversation with them and got an image and a view
of Mrs. Chandler's and Norman's view about how Los Angeles
was coming along, how it was really changing in terms
of intellectual vitality as a result of the postwar
developments . They very much encouraged me to come and
guaranteed their support as appropriate, but made a very
strong point with the fact that one of the great defi-
ciencies of UCLA was that the university on the one hand
and its leadership on the other had really not gotten
involved in the community nearly enough, that this had
almost gone by default to USC and some of the private
institutions, and that one really had to make a commit-
ment not only to scholarship and the scholarly world
but to the community that nourishes you. Well, I found
that interesting and exciting, because that's precisely
what I had done all those years in Kansas.
MINK: I don't want to interrupt your train, but it
intrigues me. Did Norman and Buffy say why UCLA had
never reached out and become involved with the community?
MURPHY: Well, yes, the reason they gave was the character
of the leadership. I reminded them, for example, of the
extension program. Even from a distance, I knew that
UCLA Extension was one of the best in the whole United
States. And yet the point was that in spite of that,
people of that quality and caliber were saying the uni-
versity at UCLA is outside the community. I had my own
views on that subsequently. I think it was partly the
MINK: I think it was the image, too, don't you?
MURPHY: The image? Partly.
MINK: Because it had had a bad image ever since Moore.
Moore got us into the trouble, and we never lived that
MURPHY: That's right. That was clear.
MINK: And the Times didn't help it.
MURPHY: That was clearly there. The "little red school-
house" business. Sure. Well, I didn't get that little
red schoolhouse business till later, till after I got
here. [iced coffee break] Yes, I discovered that very
strongly. But I'll have to come to that. Their view was
that it needed strong leadership — that's about all I can
remember — and they would be supportive.
Then I sat down with an alumni group, and it was from
them I began to get the problems vis-a-vis Berkeley in
very real terms.
MINK: Who did you get those from? Forbes?
MURPHY: Phil Davis, in a strong way. You know who Phil
MINK: I talked to Phil.
MURPHY: Do you have his oral history, I hope?
MINK: Only in my mind. We didn't do it.
MURPHY: Oh, I'll get into some. It'll be hearsay, but
I had long talks with Phil, because he played a crucial
role in the development of this institution. Mr. [Edward
A.] Dickson encouraged him to run for the legislature,
and as you know, he was a really partisan person.
But Phil Davis had a group of alumni at his house,
and they sat and talked to me, and I with them. And I
asked them what they felt they wanted, and they wanted
somebody who could--a strong chancellor is what they said--
someone who could have the guts to stand up to Berkeley.
That was the essence of a two-hour conversation.
MINK: Well, that would have been Phil's main pitch,
because he was really strong about this.
MURPHY: But all the other alumni, many of whom had been
presidents--in fact, it was a group of past presidents of
the Alumni Association. And of course, as past presidents,
many of them had served on the board. And they had first-
hand experience as to how UCLA repeatedly got the little
end of the stick, and how Sproul had gone back on his
commitment to give Dykstra authority, and how, in effect,
Sproul had really cut the heart out of Ray Allen on the
PCC, or whatever it was — football problem. So, the sum
and substance of their message was: "We think you know
about higher education; you've got a good track record
where you've been (we don't know enough about that; we're
going to talk about it) . Your big problem is to give
UCLA visibility." They did talk about this relationship
to the community. That's when I first began getting this
little red schoolhouse problem fed in.
MINK: Did you have the impression that they were sensi-
tive to the fact that UCLA's image was low profile, that
there perhaps was a hesitancy on the part of the university
to extend itself into the community simply because it
felt that it might be rejected by the community?
MURPHY: Yes, that was part of it, and I also began to
understand this reservoir they felt was in the community,
that all the Communists were out here and all the good
guys were at USC — that kind of thing.
Then I had a meeting in the chancellor's study with
a committee of the faculty. On that committee, I can't
remember all, but I remember Foster Sherwood was there.
That's when I first got an impression of Foster. There
were key leaders — Swedenberg was there, Tom Swedenberg,
and I can't remember who else. I think Vern Knudsen
climbed out of bed; he'd had the flu or something. He
was there. There were about ten. I leveled with them,
and I told them what I'd been told by distinguished
leaders in the field of higher education. Well, they
then explained the Academic Senate tradition to me, and
I said, "Well, look, you know, one thing '11 never work,
and that's the division of authority and responsibility.
And I do not come here to make the campus safe for the
faculty. I'm also realist enough to know that if you
haven't got the faculty behind you, you charge into
battle without any troops. But I wouldn't take this job,"
I said, "unless I felt that I could be what the regents
say they want, the alumni say they want — namely, a strong
chancellor. And if I'm a strong leader, inevitably, given
what I understand to be the administrative track record
here at UCLA with chancellors going in and out like a
revolving door, usually fired, with a committee of three
or people like that running the place, that you really
haven't had this. So I think you don't want to recommend
me if you just want a figurehead. On the other hand,"
I said, "the only person who can get you what you want,
a fair share of the resources that the state of California
put into higher education, is someone who's strong. And
he can't be strong in one place and weak in another."
So this was a very plainspoken conversation.
The net result of this was that they all reported
back to Kerr, and then Kerr called and said, "Look.
You've got to come; we want you; everything is fine,"
and so forth. So I pulled the family together and we
had a conversation, all four children. The two oldest
ones I had to talk with most because they would be dis-
rupted in high school. They all said, you know, "Dad,
if you want to do it, that's the thing to do." And so
we came to California.
TAPE NUMBER: I, Side 2
OCTOBER 18, 19 73
MINK: I caught one thing that intrigued me. Maybe you've
answered this. You said you were perhaps too polite when
you were talking at the board meeting about coming, too
polite in lack of sharpness.
MURPHY: Not precise enough. In other words, in the whole
area of what authority does the chancellor have vis-a-vis
the president? "Well, all that he needs." Well, at that
point, clearly, in retrospect, I should have said, "Well,
all right, to be specific, how is a faculty member promoted?
How is a faculty member appointed? Who makes decisions
about salaries?" Things like that. You see, at Kansas
there 'd never been any question. I had the responsibility
of running the place. Given, the system of the recommen-
dations came up, but the final authority before it went to
the regents was mine. And I assumed that the president
of the university was a coordinating sort of person, a
representative at the legislature, a man who, in essence,
pulled all the university budgets together, presented them
to the legislature after regental approval. But it just
didn't cross my mind that the internal operations of the
institution, the final authority there, belong anywhere
but the chancellor. Now, if I'd asked some of these
specific questions, I probably would have ascertained that
their notion of what authority was was so far removed from
what I'd been accustomed in authority that we had a huge
gap. But I don't blame that on them. I blame that on me.
I just didn't ask sharp enough, precise enough questions.
MINK: Well, now, when you came to talk to the faculty
here in the chancellor's office....
MURPHY: It was in the study of the chancellor's residence.
MINK: ...in his residence, you found that traditional
methods of appointment in the Academic Senate were different
from those that you'd been used to at Kansas?
MURPHY: Not substantially, because again, I think those
fellows, in the end, probably wanted me to come, in retro-
spect. So what I got from the Academic Senate fellows
was the letter of the law. You know, the budget committee
and all these other committees are presumably advisory.
But common law had developed, where advice became final
MINK: It's pretty much that the chancellor didn't go more
than once or twice against one of these committees before
people began asking questions.
MURPHY: That's right, and saying that "you're interfering
with our prerogatives." Furthermore, they did not get
into the question; and, again, it's probably I didn't ask
the right questions. They didn't even get into the question,
I assumed that if I were to overrule, that was it. And
finally, my recommendation went to the regents. What I
didn't comprehend was that I would overrule and Kerr could
overrule me. Now, this became very important and led
to probably my most severe confrontation with Kerr, when
I ripped away this authority, finally, and got the regents
to agree to it.
MINK: He hadn't, in his initial talks with you, or talks
prior to your appointment or immediate subsequent to it,
promised any more autonomy in this and in other respects
as far as UCLA was concerned.
MURPHY: You see, that's just my point. He said, "You'll
have all the authority you need." I don't blame Kerr.
Kerr didn't lie to me. I didn't ask the questions either
of him or the regents or of the faculty senate as to what
they meant by authority, because, as I say, it didn't
come into my mind that a man could be asked to run at that
time a 15 , 000-student, complicated university campus and
not have roughly the same authorities administratively
within the campus that I'd had at Lawrence. See, it just
didn't occur to me. I'll come in a moment to my first
MINK: When did that come?
MURPHY: Well, let me just get to that. So we get here
in the summer, July 1, after a horrible trip. I must say,
I should have sensed that the omen of the trip itself
presaged some problems. We bought a new Chevrolet station
wagon. Three of our children were at camp, so Mrs. Murphy
and I set out with our second daughter, Martha, to drive
from Lawrence to Los Angeles. I'd spoken to Hansena
Frederickson on the phone, told her roughly what night
we would get in. She told me where the key to the house
would be, which was — I forget precisely, but it would be
in a certain place. What happened was that we drive across
the country, and within six hours of leaving Lawrence,
there was a huge knocking in the motor. We discovered
one of the drive rods was broken. We had it repaired;
middle of the next day, the same thing happened; and to
make a long story short, it was a defective motor. All
of our side trips that we'd planned--to see the Petrified
Forest and all that sort of thing — were out. We literally
went from garage to garage to get here. It was the most
horrible motor trip I've ever taken.
Secondly, we limped into Los Angeles along about mid-
night, having crossed the desert (a horrible trip, you
know, in July; the air conditioning in the car broke down) ,
and finally arrived at midnight in the chancellor's residence
(I finally found it; I'd never driven there before), and
the key wasn't there. It turned out it was there but it
was in the wrong place. The person Hansena had told had
put it in the wrong place. I had to get the university
police — and I didn't know where the hell they were — to
come around and open up the house. Of course, there was
no furniture there. There were some old mattresses, so
we laid them down. We didn't even take our clothes off
to sleep that night.
Then we had the problems of moving in, but the next
thing that happened — I think the third day — a fire started.
It was in the morning, and all of a sudden we heard fire
engines roaring, and they roared right up to the front
of the chancellor's house. Somebody had thrown a cig-
arette on that hill on the west, you know, and a fire
was going on. They had to put the fire out.
The next morning we got up, and we couldn't get any
hot water. The reason for that, we discovered finally,
was that there 'd been a slight earthquake the night before
which we had not noticed, and they had earthquake safety
things on the gas pipes which knock the gas off at the
time of an earthquake; so there was no gas to heat the
hot-water heater — all of this, you know, in one period
of time. Judy finally, jokingly, said one night, "Franklin,
do you think we made the right choice? Somebody's trying
to say something to us." Anyway, that wasn't serious.
So I got into the usual planning and sitting down,
getting to know and meet my staff, talking to people and
all that sort of thing. The first thing I needed to do
was to select a vice-chancellor. I talked to a lot of
people about this. I knew because of the particular
character of the University of California, my total lack
of knowledge of it-... (And I didn't know anybody, you
know. Mrs. Murphy and I came to Southern California
literally with only one person that we knew — namely,
my sister. All of our friends were in the Middle West
or in the East.) I didn't know much about the institu-
tion, didn't know anybody on the faculty; and I began
making inquiry, concluded that I really was going to get
my number-two academic fellow, at least, from within the
institution. And I made further inquiry, and I finally
concluded that far and away the best man for the job was
Paul Dodd. And I developed then, and have never ceased
having, enormous respect for Paul Dodd. In fact, many
of the things that I got credit for, Paul had already
gotten underway. And it is clear to me that if there was
anybody around there for the previous six to eight years
who was really a strong man, although quiet in his way, it
I spoke to Kerr about this. (This is in the very
beginning, and I had total confidence in Kerr and his
candor and his way of doing business. As you see, before
this is over, I wound up having no confidence whatsoever.
because I don't want to be too harsh, but I'd been dis-
illusioned so many times.) I called Clark, and I said,
"You know, I think the first appointment I want to make
is Paul Dodd as my vice-chancellor. I'd like to talk
with you about it, because you know about these people
better than I do." He said, "Franklin, no way." I said,
"What do you mean?" He said, "The regents would never
approve him." I said, "Why?" He said, "There are two
or three regents that have an intense dislike for Paul
Dodd going back to the loyalty oath days." He said,
"You have no idea of the depth of feeling in these people
related to that time." He listed, you know, six or eight
people. "There's no way you can get that done." "Well,"
I said, "all right. I'm deeply disappointed. Do you mind
if I talk to some of them?" "Oh," he said, "you can talk.
I'm just telling you what you'll hear." So I talked to
two of them and, boy, it was clear to me that that was
the best possible way to get off on a bad start.
So I had to give that thought up; and then I began
again canvassing the faculty; and I finally began hearing
more and more about Foster Sherwood. A man of integrity,
he was a man who knew the university well; he knew the
operations of the senate; he could keep me from out of
the sand traps and the quicksand of the senate; Kerr
thought highly of him. He had not been that visible
vis-a-vis the regents, so he didn't have any scars there.
I talked to Foster. I'd been rather impressed with him
when I'd met with that first senate group. So that was
my first move.
My second move was to look around for an administrative
assistant, a troubleshooter type. There was a man there,
whose name I've completely forgotten now, whom Allen had
brought in, and I decided to work with him. I wasn't
terribly impressed with him. (The records will show who
he is; as I say, I just can't remember the name.) But
after six months, I knew that he was impossible, in terms
of my style of operating. Furthermore, he was constantly
advising me every time we had a problem with Berkeley not
to fight it through — there's no way; they'll win anyway;
and so on. And I began to see this defeatism. These
people had been beaten over the head so often that I
wasn't going to get any support.
That's when I began searching around, and I met,
one time in Berkeley, in Dean McHenry's office. Chuck
Young. I'm getting a little ahead of my story, but I'll
come back. I was very taken with Chuck — his manner, the
way he spoke. He was assisting Dean at that time; he'd
worked on the master plan and so on. So I had already
determined to get rid of this fellow, whatever his name
was, and I asked Dean about Chuck. And Dean chuckled, I
think; he didn't know why I was asking him. Dean was
ecstatic. He said, "Oh, my God, I don't know what I'd
do without him. He's first-rate. When you tell him to
do something, he not only does that, but two other things
that I'd forgotten to tell him," etc., etc. I talked
around, and I talked to people at Riverside who remembered
him and some people at UCLA who remembered him when he
got his PhD. So I offered him a job. And I think Chuck
will tell you he took it, you know, bingo! [snaps fingers]
like that, without a second thought. Let me stick to Chuck
just for a minute.
MINK: Assistant to the chancellor.
MURPHY: Assistant to the chancellor. But Chuck is one
of those persons.... I operate in a very delegated fash-
ion, basically. No-news-is-good-news kind of thing. I
like to preoccupy myself with what I conceive to be the
big problem and not have to worry about a lot of other
things. The more I began delegating to Chuck, the more
I realized that he would just eat it right up. You could
just visibly see him grow with authority and responsibility.
So pretty soon I said, "Look, he's no more an assistant
to the chancellor. He's assistant chancellor." It just
went right that way until, I guess, two or three or maybe
four years before I left, he became vice-chancellor and
It was an amazing experience. I've never worked
with a man where after a little while I could communicate
what I was interested in in less than a sentence — almost
with a look or a gesture. He knew precisely what we were
talking about. Or vice versa. It's the most effective
working relationship I've ever had with another human
being in any situation.
Anyway, let me go back. Bill Young was there. Bill
is a very deceiving person, as you know. He's not very
articulate, and he's not a great orator, and he seems to
be sort of floating around. You just wonder whether any-
thing ' 11 get done, and I discovered that remarkable things
were getting done. In my whole experience with Bill
through time, never, before or again in the history of
UCLA, will there be such a spate of building in a period
of time as occurred in that nine years.
MINK: There was great pressure on Young's office at that
MURPHY: Enormous pressure. Because Young's office, we
had to program and to supervise and everything else, at
an expenditure, I don't know, of $150 million, maybe, or
something. We doubled the size of the physical plant
on the campus in a nine-year period, including the medical
school, and set up a new master plan and master plan
transportation and roads and everything else. That was
a very exciting period, and a marvelous team of Welton
Becket as the supervising architect. Bill Young as the
guy that kept his finger on where it was going, and myself,
who got involved in it in terms of concept and so forth.
So I had the team, Foster, Bill, and ultimately
Chuck — Foster on the academic side; Bill on the physical
plant side, which was very important at that time; and
Chuck on the administrative side, the mechanics of admin-
istration. Well, you know, my theory has always been —
and every experience I've had proves it further — that
good people make you look good. The administrator who
is afraid to appoint and even promote and push a person
who potentially is better than he is is a damn fool —
because first of all, you get loyalty on the part of those
people; and secondly, I repeat, they're the ones that make
you look good. And that team made me look good, if indeed
I looked good.
I conceived of myself as a coordinator of that team.
I also conceived of myself as someone who really had to
project the image of UCLA — in the community, within the
regents — and to carry the UCLA message right directly
head on to the Berkeley administration. I also conceived
of myself as a person — my office, as it were, and I was
in the office, so I was a person — who somehow had to
convince the UCLA community that they were as good as I
knew they were. They had so long been Berkeley's little
brother. And, you know, sure, Berkeley has nine Nobel
Prize winners, and we'll never have any sort of thing;
and when you talk about the University of California in
London or New York or something, they say, "Oh, yes, you
mean Berkeley." So I conceived early on that this image
had to be changed. Now, a few things convinced me of it.
I had been told about Kerr's inauguration, which was appar-
ently a very festive event. He went to every campus, and
there was a big thing.
MINK: He was inaugurated at UCLA first, as sort of a
gesture, we were told.
MURPHY: Well, the first thing that happened was I went
to work down there, and I assumed there was an inaugura-
tion involved. I'd been inaugurated at Kansas; I'd been
to a lot of other guys' inaugurations around the country.
You know, I thought one day, I thought this was the res-
ponsibility of the regents and Clark Kerr. And finally
I was at a regents' meeting, and time had gone by, and I
said to Clark, "By the way, who's in charge of this inaug-
uration?" He said, "What inauguration?" I said, "Oh,
you don't inaugurate the chancellor?" "Oh," he said,
"yeah. I'd forgotten about that." So he called Harry
Wellman. "Harry," he said, "what do we do about inaugur-
ating a chancellor?" Harry said, "Well, I don't know."
Nobody had given it a thought. Well, I determined, right
then and there, there was going to be an inauguration.
MINK: This must have been around July of '60, somewhere
in there? July or August of '60?
MURPHY: Oh, it was in August or September. When was I
MINK: September 23, 1960.
MURPHY: Yes. Then this had to be in late July or early
August. So Kerr delegated this to Wellman, who called me
up and said, "What do you want to do?" And I said, "Well,
look. The way I understand this is done, you appoint a
committee down here of the faculty, they sit down with me,
and we work something out." So they appointed a committee
of the faculty, who'd had no experience because they just
didn't know about these things; and I sort of tried to
indicate what I thought should be done. And in the end,
nothing much was happening, so I finally just decided to
be the committee and to tell the committee what to do.
So I called Lee DuBridge, president of Caltech, who was
an old friend of mine, and I said, "Would you please speak?"
He'd be delighted to. "Where are you going to have it?"
"We're going to have it where we have the graduation" —
as they did in those days — "in Dickson Court. I want to
have it at the time of a regents' meeting down here, the
sooner the better, the first regents' meeting on the UCLA
campus." They were having them back and forth in those
days. "And it could be simple. I don't want a big thing,
and I don't want to invite everybody from all over the
country, but I would like to invite the presidents or
heads of every California institution of higher learning."
You know, it was too late by then to invite the president
of Harvard or Princeton — indeed, if you wanted to. In
retrospect, I didn't.
Well, the thing was finally scheduled, and then Kerr
decided to get involved — his office. So they started
shifting things around and said that there should be a
lunch after the thing — they would take care of that, and
things would be taken care of in Berkeley. Except they
weren't. So what happened was, we had this inauguration
with a sort of handful of people, as I recall, a very hot
day. And the day before, Kerr had gotten a cold — which
was communicated as influenza. So he announced that he
could not be present at the inauguration.
MINK: He went into UCLA hospital.
MURPHY: Yes, that's right. He went into the UCLA hospital,
He said he wanted Harry Wellman to preside. And I got this
message from somebody, and I called back and said, "If
the president can't preside, then the chairman of the
board's going to preside." And in fact, I thought the
chairman of the board was going to preside anyway. I
said, "I assume — and correct me if I'm wrong — was I
appointed in the end by the Board of Regents or the pres-
ident?" "Well, it was the Board of Regents." "Well,
then," I said, "I think the appointing authority should
preside." Well, Dean McHenry and some others said, "Look,
don't stand too much on ceremony." I said, "I don't give
a damn personally — but for the image of this institution.
You know, this is not a little two-bit cow college. It
has to have the same dignity applied to it as any other."
I said, "I love Harry Wellman, I like him, and this is not
a personal matter. This is a symbolic matter." So they
agreed. It was my first real run-in. Ed Pauley presided,
and he announced that the president was ill and in the
hospital. Afterwards we went to a lunch. We were told
it was at the Bel-Air Hotel. And it was disastrous.
MINK: Oh, is that right?
MURPHY: Oh, it was absolutely disastrous.
MINK: I didn't know that.
MURPHY: There were no place cards; nobody knew where they
were to sit. Some people that should have been there hadn't
been invited. In other words, it was the most disorganized,
badly handled thing, totally different than anything in
my administration at Kansas. When we laid something on
for the legislators, we knew precisely what was going to
happen and how it would happen. We had a system. As a
matter of fact, Bobbie Pauley was absolutely furious.
I didn't know Bobbie well then. But she came to me.
She said, "Franklin, is this a university luncheon?"
She was thinking I'd laid it on. "Can't you do better
than this? No place cards, nobody knows where to sit,"
this and that. And I said, "Bobbie, I had nothing to do
with it." I went back and talked to Hansena Frederickson
afterwards. I said, "Who does this around here?" "Well,"
she said, "in past times, I usually have been involved
in this, and Mrs. Allen sometimes, but," she said, "we
were told that the university would handle this, the
MINK: At Berkeley.
MURPHY: At Berkeley. "Well," I said, "that's the last
time. I want to instruct you right now: I don't want
you to communicate with anybody in Berkeley without let-
ting me know — on any subject." It was my second awakening.
"Oh," she said, "Dr. Murphy, I can't agree to that." I
said, "Why?" She said, "I'm not only your secretary, I'm
Clark Kerr's secretary." I said, "Oh?" "Oh," she said,
"yes. President Kerr, when he came in, said that he needed
to have a secretary for down here, and he deeded to have
somebody who could give him information and whom he could
use, and who could organize his life when he came down —
and I was it." Well, I said, "Hansena, I don't want you to
create a problem for the president, but," I said, "do
you like that role?" She said, "Dr. Murphy, I hate it."
She said, "Quite honestly, I've been asked questions
that I just don't think were appropriate, because my
loyalty ought to be to the man I'm working with day in
and day out." I said, "There isn't any doubt about that."
So I called Harry Wellman, and I said, "Harry, we've
got a problem here, and I want you to resolve it with
Clark. I don't want to get into another hassle right
after the inaugural thing." I said, "Hansena Frederickson
cannot have a relationship with anybody in Berkeley,
least of all the president. Now," I said, "out of our
budget — I'll find it somewhere--we ' 11 provide secretarial
assistance. Kerr is down here, you know, once every three
months. He really doesn't need it. But I can guarantee
that the president, or any other statewide officer, will
get whatever secretarial assistance they need when they
come down." Well, Harry said, "Well, why not?" I said,
"Harry, there's a very basic principle here. My secretary
is mY_ secretary. And I'm just not going to give all that.
You make it perfectly clear to Clark." "Well," he said,
"it's not a big thing." I said, "That's right, it isn't
a big thing, so let's get it resolved."
MINK: Oh, yes, but it was a big thing. You see, it was
something that it was good to have nipped in the bud.
because it was something that began right after the retire-
ment of Provost [Ernest Carroll] Moore and continued from
that time forward, with [Robert Gordon] Sproul here six
months and there six months, a secretary here — all through
[Earle R. ] Hedrick, all through [Clarence A.] Dy]<stra, the
same way. And she had always served in this capacity — which
in a sense makes a spy.
MURPHY: That was the potential. That was the potential.
MINK: A spy.
MURPHY: So I said, "Harry, look. I don't want to create
a problem with Hansena. I'm delighted to have her. She's
forgotten more than I'll ever know about the way this place
is run. I think she's discreet. I'm never going to ask
her and I don't think she's going to tell me things about
anybody who went before. But," I said, "it's very simple.
Either Hansena will be assigned to Clark — we'll give her a
little office up the hall, and I'll get another secretary —
or Hansena stays with me and we'll get a little office up
the hall and keep it vacant for a secretary for Clark. But
it can't be both." I said, "I hope it will be the latter,
because Hansena could be very helpful to me." Well, he
called back subsequently and said okay. But that bothered
me, you know.
Well, then the next thing that happened was, I was
so aware of the fact in those days, I'd go to these educa-
tional meetings in South America and Europe and the East,
and quite literally (it wasn't so much in this country,
but even surprisingly in those days in this country) :
"You're at UCLA. Now, what relationship does UCLA have
to the University of California?" And I'd try to explain
this. "Oh, we thought that was Berkeley." I'd hear that
over and over again. University of California at Berkeley.
So I got mad one day. I picked up the telephone and called
in from somewhere, and the phone operator said, "University
of California." And I said, "Is this Berkeley?" She said,
"No." I said, "Well, who have I gotten to?" "UCLA."
I said, "Why didn't you say UCLA?" "Oh," she said, "we're
instructed to say University of California." So the next
morning I went to the office and wrote a memo, I don't
know, to Paul Hannum or somebody; I said, "Will you please
instruct the operators as of noon today, when they answer
the phone, to say, 'UCLA.'" Well — who was it? — I guess it
was maybe Foster or Bill who was in the office when I was
saying this, and I guess Hansena, too. And they said, "You
know, they won't like it at Berkeley." And I said, "Well,
let's just see. There are a few things, maybe, we can do
around here without getting their permission."
Sure enough, about two months later — and again, this
was the way Kerr operated; he would talk through Harry
Wellman very often — Harry came around to me and he said.
"Franklin, we called down there the other day, and the
operator said, 'UCLA.' Is that new?" I said, "Yes."
"Well," he said, "it's always the University of California,
isn't it?" And I said, "Harry, the problem is that most
people who call here want to talk to somebody at UCLA.
Maybe up at Berkeley people will understand, but," I
said, "most people who call in down here know whom pre-
cisely they're calling. They're calling at UCLA. It's
a practical matter. It's like a road sign." "Well,"
he said, "you know, I don't...." He said something about
the fact — somewhere the word "authorization" came in —
who authorized it? I said, "Harry, I authorized it. And
make it quite clear to everybody up here that if I can't
authorize the telephone operators to identify the institu-
tion, I sure as hell shouldn't stay at UCLA or in the
University of California, because it would be my belief
that my authority is zero." That put an end to that.
Well, you know, there were hundreds of these things.
God, I can't think of them all. But very quickly on, I
began to realize this whole symbolism of control, and the
subconscious — or even deliberate — desire up there to keep
this little brother from getting too big and keep it from
gaining its own strength and visibility and self-confidence,
is the way I guess I'd put it.
MINK: You certainly couldn't expect to alter in one or
two days what it took twenty or thirty years to build up.
MURPHY: That's right. But it was clear to me that this
was now one of my major, major problems.
MINK: I had a question (I like to listen to you talk
rather than ask you questions) : What you thought, when
you went in there after you arrived, that the single
greatest challenge that you met was. Maybe it was this.
But maybe you didn't know it until after you were here.
MURPHY: Oh, I really didn't. No, I didn't know it. As
a matter of fact, as I say, I'd made some assumptions that
turned out to be completely faulty. And it didn't take
me six months — because living here now I was playing golf
with Phil Davis on a Saturday; I was talking to Bill Young;
I sat down with Mrs. Dickson one evening and spent a whole
evening with her and out poured the story of Ed Dickson's
problems, which was from a different point of view. And it
didn't take me long to begin to get the whole history of
this relationship. Plus the fact that I had gone through
the beginning of a budget cycle and saw how little authority
I really had. Within six months, I began to realize that my
single greatest problem — not just me personally, but in
order to advance the best interests of this institution —
was to get out from under the shackle of the Berkeley
MINK: I know you've got a direction, and I don't want to
divert it; but you mentioned the first budget cycle, and
maybe if you could say something about what your reaction
was to that, because that was a really important point.
MURPHY: Well, in the first place, I discovered that the
administrative apparatus on the UCLA campus to get this
budget together was absolutely rudimentary. We had a
lovely little guy called Jerry Fleischmann who worked his
tail off and was loyal and dedicated but was way over his
head. The reason that they had any budget at all was that
they'd get a formula down from Berkeley. Everything was
done by formula — so many FTEs, so many students; and then
if you had the student FTE , then you related that to
faculty, new faculty, you related that to book budgets —
and these were formulae that had preexisted. There were
formulae up there as to how many dollars per square foot
of building space you needed for maintenance and all that
sort of thing. So there was nothing creative in this budget,
It was just reacting to a formula.
Secondly, I discovered that as the budget came down,
there was practically no flexibility in moving between-line
items. If you could save some money here, you couldn't
transfer it to there. It'd have to go back in the univer-
sity pool. There was no incentive, therefore, for creative
And thirdly, if you wanted to do new and innovative
things, you not only had to go through the whole damn
senate process of approvals and this and that — which I
didn't mind in the end very much, because that was an
interesting and constructive dialogue, it was a substan-
tive dialogue; even if there was disagreement, it was
on intellectual grounds. And let me say here quickly,
in the end I came to not only work within the senate
system, I really came to enjoy it. And I'm convinced
in its way, even though it's ponderous and even though
it seems inefficient at times, it probably is the best
system I know. But it works only if the administrator
working with the senate on campus has the final authority
and cannot be second-guessed.
Anyway, I discovered that in terms of money, budgeting
for it, uses of it and so on, there was no flexibility
whatsoever — no transfers, no nothing. And therefore,
they didn't need anybody but Jerry and a couple of secre-
taries. It was just a mathematical calculation.
The second thing I ran into on the budget side was
when I sought comparative figures. The thing that led me
into the seeking of comparative figures was the library
problem. I had determined — a personal penchant, but I
think it valid in any event — that distinction of a univer-
sity, both symbolically as well as in terms of tools, is
related to the library. I had been talking to Larry [Powell]
about this, and Larry finally began to level with me about
some of the problems that he'd been having. And I said,
"Well, what does Berkeley get in these matters?" Well,
he said he'd been trying to find out for years, but he
could never get the facts, but he said it was a hell of
a lot more than we were. So I made an innocent inquiry.
I said, "By the way," to Harry Wellman one day — and this
was all in the first year — I said, "I'd just like to know
whether in terms of library support, book budgets, all
the rest of it, the formula treats Berkeley and UCLA the
same." He gave me a very evasive answer. And then I
started talking to the budget people at Berkeley, and I
was told plainly that this was none of my business. And
I began to get suspicious then, needless to say.
Finally, I concluded that the Berkeley people were
already beginning to get a little leery of me, that they
were beginning to sense that they had gotten a fox into
the chicken pen. I also began to realize that I would
never get anywhere in getting equity, in getting authority,
without working directly with the regents, because I was
convinced that the regents would never be told. There would
never be a transference of my concerns, and I was convinced
that the regents — just in terms of reality — would never
know the right questions to ask. Now, I knew this was
a dangerous game to play; and in retrospect, it was a
disloyal game, because I do believe in a system — I believe
in channels. And I can tell you I believe it's true. I
can swear to you today that I would never have gone the
regents route had Kerr and Wellman been full and open with
me. I would have been reasonable. I would have pressed,
of course. But I would have believed that there was full
disclosure and that I could enter into the lists without
my legs tied together. I didn't want any disadvantage.
I never, in the height of the heat of all this thing,
I never said I wanted something at the expense of Berkeley.
I always said that Berkeley was a jewel in the crown of
the University of California and that the university and
the regents should support it with great vigor; and Roger
Heyns can testify to that, in terms of the things I did
for him in the end.
Let me tell you a story. This was again in the first
year. Paul Dodd had come to me; he'd gotten the word he
wasn't going to be vice-chancellor. Paul knew, really,
why. But Paul was this kind of a guy — he said, "Franklin,
you know, I've had a lot of responsibility in building
these institutes and building some distinction here, there,
and elsewhere, and one of the things we're under way on is
to build up the Slavic languages thing. We have the oppor-
tunity of hiring" — I forget his name — a Slavic name.
Professor So-and-so, who is retiring early from Harvard.
And he'll come for five years. We'll have to pay him a
little over scale to get him. " But he was one of the
giants in the field. He said, "The importance is that
even in those five years, he will attract good young people;
we'll be able to recruit at the assistant professor level
and so on and get the building of a department." I said,
"Paul, it sounds good enough to me." It had all been
approved by the budget committee unanimously and all the
rest of it, so I forwarded this to Kerr. And I got back--
in those days it was just a verbal communication — a pro-
posal denied. So I called Kerr on the phone, "What are
you denying for? We've got the money in the budget."
"Well," he said, "look. We're going to concentrate on
Africa and the Middle Eastern things at UCLA, and I don't
think you can go in all these directions at the same time."
Well, I said this had been completely evaluated, and I
went through the whole thing — I won't go into detail.
He said, "Well, I'm sorry. This is not one I'm willing
to take on to the regents."
To my astonishment, I learned — and this is no hearsay,
I learned it from the horse's mouth three years later — that
at the time that proposal had gone to Berkeley, Kerr had
called the chairman of the Slavic language department at
Berkeley and said, "By the way, do you know Professor So-and-
so at Harvard is available?" And of course, Kerr knew
precisely; he'd seen in the papers that went up the real
distinction of this fellow.
Well, these things gradually accumulated. Now, in
the meantime, I had gotten the whole history of this insti-
tution and its struggles against Berkeley.
TAPE NUMBER: II, Side 1
OCTOBER 18, 1973
MURPHY: In the meantime, I had been meeting and talking
on social grounds with regents and alumni leaders, because
I must say that some of the regents and many of the aliamni
leaders went all out to bring me into this community.
Ed Carter and Ed Pauley, John Canaday and Bill Forbes,
you know, just leaned over backwards to get me involved
in this, that, and the other thing. Tom Davis, Phil Davis,
John Vaughn — all of them. Well, in the process of playing
golf or going to dinner or whatever, they were anxious to
tell me about the background. It always came out, especially
from the alumni, nonregents, the problems they'd had over
time. This is where I began to learn about the intense
struggles, starting with Ed Dickson, in this university
becoming anything. Now, that's all been written up.
MINK: In a way, it's been written up. Well, a lot of
it's been recorded. Not too much of it has been actually
MURPHY: Well, I suppose.
MINK: UCLA on the Move, as we know — referring to that
semicentennial history of the university — is pretty much
of a gloss-over of what's actually happened. I was going
to ask you, one of the stories that Phil Davis told me —
and this would be second-hand if you heard it — was con-
cerning the struggle over the appointment of Provost Dykstra,
Did he talk to you about that at all?
MURPHY: Yes, and I'll tell you who can give you even more
on that — John Canaday. Have you done his?
MINK: Not yet, no.
MURPHY: Well, most of the stuff I got from Phil was about
actions in the legislature, especially the establishment
of the medical school, the law school, and the engineering
school. I'll come to that. The story I hear from Canaday
--because he was then executive director of the Alumni
Association — and as I remember it (it's been a long time),
the dimensions were roughly this. They had determined — the
alumni — that they had to have some kind of a visible and
strong chancellor. And Sproul had come up with some names
that everybody knew would be his puppets. Dykstra had
this track record. He'd been at UCLA. A lot of the details
of this story I've forgotten, but John tells me that they
went to Sproul. They'd gone to Dykstra, and Dykstra said,
yes, he'd be interested in coming. No, I think it was
the other way. They went to Sproul and said they wanted
him to look at Dykstra. And he said, oh, yes, he would
do that. He came back and said, "I've talked to Dykstra,
and he has no interest whatsoever." Then, Canaday said,
either accidentally or deliberately, some of this same
UCLA group ran into Dykstra, talked with him, and he said,
"Yeah, I ' d be interested in coming." "Well, have you talked
to Sproul about this?" "No, Sproul has never discussed
this with me. "
So they went back and confronted Sproul with his lie.
I don't know any other word for it. His misinformation.
And Sproul said, "There must be some kind of a misunder-
standing," and so forth, but obviously he was in a corner
on this thing. "Well, if Mr. Dykstra is interested in
coming, well, certainly, we ought to nail this down right
now," you know. You know how Sproul was: he could turn
it around very quickly. And Dykstra came. However, Dykstra
didn't agree to come until he'd gotten — according to John
Canaday and also according to Hansena — Dykstra had gotten,
he thought, firm commitments from Sproul. And practically
every one of them turned out to be nonexistent. And my
impression is that to a large extent Dykstra died of a
broken heart, literally and figuratively. But again, the
one living man that was in the center of that that I know
well is John Canaday, and he can give it out, chapter and
Now, on the Phil Davis side, there was also a
Reverend [Jesse R.] Kellems here, who had been in the
legislature, who'd also worked for the university. Also
Ernie Debs, the current supervisor, was in the legislature
at that time. But Phil, I think, is the one I got it best
from. And Phil made it clear to me that the professional
schools at UCLA in every case had to be rammed down the
throat of the statewide administration.
Kellems is the one that carried the engineering school.
He explained to me how they were trying to kill it in the
legislature. And of course, the man that Sproul used to
do this was Jim Corley, who was his legislative operator.
Corley's influence, of course, was in the senate. They
were there longer, and he was shrewd enough to get the
senate with him. He didn't have nearly as much control
over the house, because they were more in and out and there's
more of them. I remember Kellems telling me how he just
told Corley that he would see to it that over time the uni-
versity would really get a beating unless this engineering
school were established. He had to threaten. The same was
true of the law school. There were two or three alumni
and, ultimately, regents who in effect just forced this down
But the one I remember best was the medical school,
because the decision had been made down here that they
wanted a medical school, that people in Southern California
felt they should have a medical school, etc. But now you
had not only the statewide administration and the Berkeley
crowd basically fighting, but you had the San Francisco
people fighting, because they had a monopoly on this.
And they were powerful, because they were doctors of
regents and doctors of_ legislators. So Phil Davis said
he went to the legislature because Ed Dickson urged him
to. UCLA needed somebody. And this was Phil's basic
job every year--to help UCLA. So the medical school was
his baby, and it was finally gotten through the assembly
Ways and Means Committee, was approved by the assembly —
the appropriation for the medical school. The regents,
curiously, had not approved it at all. So Sproul ' s first
gambit was to tell the regents that they had to fight
this because the legislature was taking educational policy
out of their hands. Well, the facts are that a number of
requests had been made to the regents and to Sproul to
support a medical school in the proper way, and they had
blocked it. This was the only way around it. So Corley
went to work, and the bill was stalled in the senate.
In the meantime, the senate had passed the appro-
priation measure for the whole university. It was now
over in the assembly for passage. So Phil Davis told me
that he called Corley up one day, and he said, "I want
you to tell Sproul something. I want you to tell Sproul
that as long as the university blocks that bill for the
medical school in the senate, the university's appropria-
tion bill isn't going to get out of the assembly. And it's
that simple. And also" — you remember Phil; he was tough —
"I want you to tell him that I'm just as patient as he is.
Most of all, tell him that he needs the money more than I
do." Corley said, "Oh, you can't do that; you'd be cru-
cified," this, that, and the other thing, threatened him.
And Phil said, "I'm just telling you. You tell him that."
So it went down to the wire; it really did. And that
bill was just stalled right in the assembly committee.
And finally Sproul related this to the regents. He said,
"You know, we have no alternative." And they agreed.
So the medical school bill came out, over, nearly, Sproul ' s
dead body. And you can imagine how I felt when I picked
up this history of UCLA and saw the groundbreaking with
Bob Sproul there digging the thing, with Governor [Earl]
Warren, and saying, you know, "one of the great days in the
history of the University of California."
Well, these bits of hypocrisy began building and
building and building. Then my suspicion began building
when they wouldn't give me comparative data on FTE , book
budgets, or anything else. So as I said earlier, I finally
concluded that either I ought to get out of this job or
win this battle. And since I had no troops except the
regents, I had to get it done through the regents. It
was very tough to me to come to this decision, I repeat,
because clearly it was an act of disloyalty. I was getting
out of channels. I repeat, my rationalization was that
there was no other way to do it.
MINK: One thing you pointed out earlier was that you had
talked to Kerr at least on one point. You said, "Well,
is it okay to talk to the regents?" He said, "Sure."
MURPHY: Yes. On that one point. Well, what happened
was, I began briefing the regents. Now, I must say, this
came very normally, because, as I told you earlier, Pauley
and Carter and Canaday and Buff Chandler had become my
social friends as well. We became good friends; we were
socializing together. So I would use those occasions
and other occasions to tell these fellows how bad I thought
the situation was and in fact they didn't know how bad it
was. And I began generating questions that I thought
they should ask. And I began explaining that this was
really, in my view, the last good chance for UCLA to really
make the move to distinction, because — and this was an
egocentric thing to say — that if I with my experience
and my kind of Irish temperament got licked in this, I
didn't think they'd ever find anybody that could win that
I must say, the regents, even the UCLA regents, in
my experience, have never wanted to see anything except
the whole university improved. They have not been parochial,
But they have been damn firm, in my experience, that UCLA
deserved its fair share. So this was not a destructive
thing; this was a positive thing — at least, the way I'm
Well, we started out. I remember one episode which
was a humorous one, because it went too far. It was early
in the days of dormitory building. We had Dykstra Hall
and we had Sproul Hall — and my God, again, given all the
loyalties of people who worked their tail off down here,
to have that thing named after Bob Sproul, who did every-
thing he could to keep this place back, is a miscarriage
of justice, too. But that's another question. There was
a discussion at the buildings and ground meeting of the
regents one day, and the regents were going to put in an
application for two dormitories at Berkeley, two additional
dormitories. Now, the facts are that we already had one
more than they (this was early in the dormitory building) .
The statewide administration recommended an application
to Washington for two dorms at Berkeley and one at UCLA.
And frankly, that's all we wanted at that time. To my
amazement. Carter spoke up and said, "I won't support
this unless there are two at UCLA and two at Berkeley" —
when we hadn't even wanted two. By God, it sailed right
through. And that's how we got the two up there, in
addition, rather than the one. This is merely symbolic
of the fact that these people were beginning to speak up
and say, "Look, equal treatment."
Well, I decided that symbolically and in every other
way, the way to really bring this issue to a head was
the library, because in a disproportionate way the library
means a lot to faculty — in its symbolism and everything.
So I began on this library. I began saying I thought we
were being terribly shortchanged. I pulled out of the
regents' minutes a statement that had been made and approved
by the regents, a policy, that UCLA and Berkeley would
be the two major campuses in the state, north and south.
And I said the implication here is crystal clear. They
deserve equal treatment if they're going to be the two
great campuses. (This is before they'd gotten into this
new-campus stuff.) I went to them, and I said, "You know,
the statewide administration is not following this policy
of the regents. They're ignoring it." "Well, what do you
mean?" I said, "In two areas, they're ignoring it. Area
one, the library. I can't tell you how badly, but there
is an enormous disproportion in acquisition funds." I
then explained the nuances of the fact that of the exchange
of the University Press, all the books went to Berkeley.
In those days, they did. And that was a free thing.
Exchange of journals — all went to Berkeley. Therefore
they had those funds — I mean, they didn't have to buy those
things that we had to out of our funds. But in addition
to that, in absolute numbers, compared to any FTE rela-
tionship at all. I said, "Also, there is the faculty
disproportion. There are many more over-scale professors;
there are many more higher-category people; and furthermore,
these are my guesses, but if you ask the questions — I
can't get the information--you ' 11 find out that the faculty-
student ratio at Berkeley is substantially smaller than it
is at UCLA." Well, these fellows, by one means or another,
started boring in and asking questions; and they were able
to get information that, of course, I couldn't. And sure
enough, all of these suspicions were manifest.
MINK: About when was this?
MURPHY: This was about two or three years after I'd been
here. I had to get my feet on the ground.
MINK: I mean, a lot of this that you could feed to them,
RV [Robert Vosper] was feeding to you, though, right?
MURPHY: Oh, yes. Bob was getting what information he
could. But here again, in those days, you couldn't get
the figures. Now, we did know, we finally got the figures,
on how many books they were bringing in each year. And
God, you know, that was way above us. So finally, I decided
to make the first fight on the library. I knew I had to
make the second fight on the faculty-student ratio and the
third fight on building funds. To me , I had to make the
symbol. So this matter finally came up — and I won't go
into a whole lot of detail. But the regents finally, on
a motion of Canaday or Forbes or somebody, passed a motion
that there would be created two major research libraries
for the University of California — one north and one south,
one at Berkeley and one at UCLA — and that these libraries
would grow to x millions of volumes this year and y millions
of volumes the following year.
About that time, at a meeting of the chancellors prior
to the regents' meeting, Kerr said, "I have a matter I want
to bring up. We've got bad administration going here.
We've got chancellors going directly to regents; we've
got regents bringing up materials that have not been pro-
cessed by the statewide administration; so I am now estab-
lishing a rule that no chancellor may speak to a regent
without my permission." He said, "Furthermore, now that
we're into this, I understand that some of our chancellors
have been communicating with other university presidents
in California. This is a very sensitive matter; we've got
a master plan" — and this, that, and the other thing — "so I
want to establish another policy: that no chancellor may
speak to the president of another university without my
approval." [tape recorder turned off]
I spoke up, and I said, "Well, let me get this defined.
As you know, Clark, Ed Pauley's become a close personal
friend of mine, Ed Carter, John Canaday, Bill Forbes, Buff
Chandler" — several others who were on the board at that time.
"Are you saying that I can no longer associate with them
socially?" "Oh, no," he said. "I just mean about university
business." "Well," I said, "are you saying that if they
ask me about this or that or the other thing at UCLA, I'm
to say, 'I'm sorry, you'll have to talk to Clark Kerr'?"
He said, "Yes." "Well," I said, "I'd better just tell you
right now that I'll not abide by this policy." I said,
"Furthermore, are you saying that when Norman Topping calls
me up and says, 'Franklin, we have a problem with the board
of county supervisors about the funding of our medical
schools and the two county hospitals,' that I'm to say,
'I'm sorry, Norman, I can't talk with you; you must call
Berkeley,' or 'I must call Berkeley and get permission'?
Are you saying that when Lee DuBridge calls me and says,
'Franklin, there's a possibility that we can make a joint
application for a nuclear reactor or something with the
National Science Foundation for joint operation in Southern
California, ' I must say no — not even explore the possibility?"
"Well," he said, "I think these are matters that need to be
taken up with the president's office." I said, "Clark,"
and very low-key, I said, "if that's to be the policy,
I'll have to tell you in advance I can't abide by it."
I said, "Frankly, the reason I can't is that I'm 500 miles
away from the statewide office. You may not think so.
statewide administration may not think so, but everybody
in Southern California thinks I'm administering UCLA.
Now, am I or am I not? And do you want me to destroy that
image? Do you merely want me to say that I'm a housekeeper?"
"Well," he said, "I think we've got other matters to discuss
at this meeting. Perhaps we can discuss this privately.
Maybe the thing to do is for you fellows to think about
these proposals, and I'll come back next month and we'll
discuss it subsequently," It was never further discussed.
So afterwards, two or three of the chancellors,
Emil Mrak especially, came around and said, "God, that
would have been disastrous." He said, "You know, the
regents on the board that are interested in agriculture,
they're constantly talking to me about it. I could no
more have lived with that...." "Well," I said, "why
didn't you speak up?" He said, "You know, we're not
accustomed to it." I said, "Let's all get accustomed
About three weeks after that. Dean McHenry called
me. That was while he was still working for Kerr and
before Santa Cruz had been established. He said, "Franklin,
I want to talk to you at the next meeting of the regents."
So we went out in his car and he drove me around, and he
said, "You know, I don't think you understand the way this
thing works. You should know that people up here at Berkeley
are getting very disturbed about your method of operation."
Well, I said, "Why?" "Well, you're not a team player."
And I said, "Dean, you know, that's the truest thing you've
said to me since I've come to California. How can you play
on a team when you have no notion of the goals the team is
supposed to achieve and you're not really a member of the
team? Now," I said, "maybe the thing for me to do is to
leave UCLA." [tape recorder turned off] He was speaking
for Clark. I said, "I've decided I'm not going to leave
until the regents ask me to. I've never been fired in my
life, and maybe that's an experience I ought to have to
round out my total experience. But," I said, "I'll tell
you: until I'm fired, I'm going to have but one objective--
and now you carry this word back to whomever you're speaking
for — and that is to strengthen UCLA within the framework
of the regents' resolution," which I referred him to,
"'to strenghthen the authority and responsibility of the
chancellor in the system, wherever he might be,' and
finally, in so doing, believe that I'm strengthening the
entire University of California. Because the University
of California can be no stronger than its weakest part,
and we chancellors can't run complicated campuses in these
complicated days. Now, if I fail in this, or if I become
too disruptive, I suspect the regents will ask me to
leave. But until that time, I'm going to proceed just the
way I've been proceeding. Now frankly, as you know,
Dean," I said, "my problem is that rarely can I talk to
the president. He's either in Hong Kong, or presiding
over a conference in London, or [is] a consultant in
Washington, or he's consulting with his regents. He
increasingly has no time to talk about direction, policy,
or philosophy; and what time he has got, he is now totally
devoting to the new campuses. So," I said, "I'm going to
continue to operate the way I'm operating until the regents
tell me not to. "
I promptly went back — and I didn't think it was a
dishonest matter — and I said to Carter and Pauley and
Canaday and so on, I said, "Listen, you know, I'm getting
into difficulty, and I want you to know that I never want
to be president of this university. I don't want Kerr's
job under any circiimstances , because if I'm going to stay
in education, I want to be on a campus. If I go into
administering an empire, I'll go into business or govern-
ment or something. The greatest satisfaction I've had is
being on a campus. So if I have confrontations with Kerr,
you'll have to understand this, because I'm really trying
to do this job for UCLA that you people told me you wanted
done." And I said, "I had a confrontation the other day
in which he advised me that I was not to speak to any of
you on matters relating to the university. And I simply
told him I wouldn't abide by it."
Well, that infuriated the regents, because I'd never —
indeed, at the very end I tried to save Kerr's job; I'll
get to that--I never once in my years at UCLA tried to get
at Kerr. If it seemed like I might have from time to time,
it was only because of trying to get Kerr to stop from
cutting our library budget or prevent it from becoming
equal, but there was never a personal thing in this.
In the meantime, my wife was beginning to have prob-
lems. Kay Kerr decided that she needed to be to the wives
of the chancellors what Clark was to their husbands. So
she would start calling meetings of wives of chancellors.
And she would say, "Now, I think you should do this. This
is what we do at Berkeley. This is what we do with foreign
students. This is what we do with faculty receptions. I
think we should have a manual of the way the chancellor's
wife deals with this, that, and the other thing." You know,
here she's talking to my wife, who'd done this for twelve
MINK: It's really very hard to believe, you know.
MURPHY: Well, it's an absolutely true thing.
MINK: I'm certain it's true. I'm sure it is, but it's
certainly hard to believe.
MURPHY: Judy would come home and say, "God almighty, what
am I to do?" I'd say, "Just ignore it. Just do what you do
and do superbly well. Pay no attention whatsoever."
She said, "Do I have to go to these meetings?" I said,
"Well, yes. You know. Go and sit and listen. Don't
argue. And just bite your tongue and come back and do what
we would do in any event. Pay no attention."
However, about that time — again, I can't give you
dates, but they can be tied to experience — Sam Gould was
chancellor at Santa Barbara. He was married to a Danish
woman, I think, who spoke with an accent — a charming woman,
a lovely woman. Sam was having some problems up there
because there were cliques on that campus in terms of the
previous chancellor and Sam. You remember that previous
chancellor had gotten into that trouble in New York and so
on. So this clique problem ran down into the faculty
wives. Sam's wife was trying to heal this and doing things
with wives — parties and so on. Well, one of the people
that didn't like Sam's wife or something got to Kay Kerr,
who instead of doing the thing you would normally do — "I'm
sorry, I don't want to hear about it, that's Mrs. Gould's
responsibility" — listened very carefully; and then the
next time they were down here, she got in touch with Gould's
wife and just gave her hell. "You shouldn't be doing that
sort of thing; you're running with the wrong crowd" — this,
that, and the other thing, all in terms of internal campus
politics and cliques. Sam called me up, and he was beside
himself. (Sam and I were very close.) He said that his
wife had told him that, by God, he was going to leave.
They weren't going to stay there one more minute. She
would not put up with this; it was humiliating and insul-
Well, this little thing went over. But a year or
two later--Kay Kerr continued to run these so-called
"seminars" for the behavior of chancellors' wives and the
management of chancellors' wives' lives — the State Univer-
sity of New York was looking for somebody to run it.
(They asked me, incidentally. They were asking a lot of
people to come back and look at the job.) Sam went back
and looked at it. It wasn't that good a job. In fact,
it was a bitter experience for Sam; as you know, he sub-
sequently left it. He said, "You know, I'm going to take
it, Franklin, for one reason and one reason only: My wife
wants to get out of California. She cannot take this kind
of thing." It's the first time I've ever told that story.
So we had this going all the time. It was much more
severe in the early days. Finally, at least as far as we
were concerned, it kind of disappeared, except for a few
instances that we'll get to subsequently, because Kay
Kerr finally understood that Judy and I were paying no
attention whatsoever. Judy finally just stopped going to
the meetings. She simply always had an engagement or sone-
thing. She'd go to every third one or something. They
died a natural death. But it just, again, poisoned the
water. This was a group that was supposed to work together
and be self-supportive, and you were having people who
really were not that competent and experienced and didn't
know, really, the situation on the different campuses.
UCLA's totally different than Davis, and Davis totally
different than Berkeley, and so on. Quite literally,
there was at one time a proposal to create a handbook
for chancellors' wives.
Well, these were the kind of issues that began
building, and little by little, with regent backing,
things began happening: the regents' resolution about
the libraries — which, you know, even to this day they're
still fighting up there--they never really fully iraple-
mented it. But at least we moved ahead in a quantim way.
They always sniped at it, even at the end, until Kerr
finaly got out. [Charles J.] Hitch has been, I think,
much fairer. Then came the building thing. Here we had
some very real problems. I wanted to finish the medical
My view about Kerr, incidentally, in all of this,
is that one of the problems with Kerr was, he's basically
a Berkeley guy. This is why Hitch was a great appointment,
and why really, in essence, the president of the University
of California should never come from the system. He
always should come from outside. Berkeley was his home,
and he lived up there, and all those faculty were his
friends, and he was proud of that; and so he was always
going to see that Berkeley was number one. At the other
end of the spectrum, he realized that he'd never get credit
for Berkeley. That's my interpretation. So he seized upon
the new campuses. This would be Kerr's monxoment. Now,
what fell in the middle was a place like UCLA.
MINK: And like Davis.
MURPHY: Yes. Well, what's UCLA going to do for Kerr?
Nothing. So this was increasingly part of the problem —
preoccupation of regents' meetings with new campuses and
this and that and the other thing, and camouflaging and
hiding my efforts to get equal treatment. On the building
side, however, we were very lucky. We had Mrs. Chandler
and we had Bill Forbes as members of the building and
grounds committee, and they really worked with us. And
I must say that whether it was Kerr's way of trying to keep
them happy or whether he finally got the message — namely,
that the southern regents were determined to have this or
whatever — the one thing we never had problems with was
building. We got that building money. And we got it with
a minimum of struggle. We had some struggles about the
medical school; they wanted to only do half of it, and
I finally got Mrs. Chandler to really ram that through.
We had a few other little troubles. But we really got
equity on building.
Now, our next step was on the FTE , and according
to Chuck, we're pretty close to it now. But here they
really twisted and turned. The regents began asking ques-
tions--you know, "What is the faculty-student ratio at
Berkeley?" Well, it was lower, but there were reasons.
They had a higher graduate enrollment. Then, right in the
middle of the ball game, they decided to change the inter-
nal weighting in terms of the way they allocated FTE fac-
ulty; and so now a PhD program would have a factor of 4,
and a rriaster's program a factor of 2.5, and an undergrad-
uate program, 1. So that was the thing which applied to
Berkeley and UCLA. In the new campuses, however, the
undergraduate got a factor of 3 and so forth and so on.
And they just jiggled these statistics around — probably,
in my view, to, in effect, get the bulk of the faculty
FTE they were getting from the legislature to the new
campuses and keep the Berkeley ratios the way they'd always
been. Well, we began fighting this battle, and again we
had the regents, again we sought statistics, again we didn't
have them, again the regents sought them for us; and grad-
ually these statistics began coming out. And that, as I
say, is when Kerr suddenly realized he had to find a new
formula, and they came up with this new formula which
temporarily justified the then status quo; although instead
of reducing the Berkeley thing, we began getting relatively
more FTE instead of their putting them in the stockpile for
the new campuses.
TAPE NUMBER: II, Side 2
OCTOBER 19, 1973
MINK: I think that when you left off yesterday afternoon,
you were about to talk about the infamous Charter Day.
MURPHY: Before I do that, there 're a couple of other
little incidents that I think are important to suggest
the flavor of the times and the character of the problem.
I indicated earlier in the tape some of my shock at the
lack of budgetary responsibility, budgetary flexibility
on the campus, and my determination to do something about
that. That entire first year, not only did I get the input
of the history of all these problems that UCLA had had vis-
a-vis Berkeley and the statewide office, but I was uncov-
ering, week after week, instances in which normal, reason-
able campus flexibility didn't exist.
The thing all culminated when we were making plans
for the first commencement after I'd gotten here. Some-
where along the way, as the program was being developed,
somebody said, "And of course, then, at this point in the
program, the president will give the degrees, issue the
degrees." I said, "What?" "Oh, yes." Well, as it turned
out, for years, since the degree was the University of
California degree, the theory had always been that the
president came and, in ceremonial fashion, gave the degree.
Well, I just went through the roof. I said, "This is abso-
lutely outrageous," I called up Harry Wellman. He said,
"Oh, yes, this is the way it is, always been. This is
the way the regents want it."
Parenthetically, one of the games, one of the things
that forced me to go directly to the regents on matters,
was that early on, whenever I would object to something,
I would get from Berkeley the kind of phraseology, "Well,
we understand your view, but the regents want it the
other way. " This is the old technique of talking about
the third party. And I must say, after I got that for a
while, I decided to find out what the regents really wanted.
In any event, on this issue, I was determined not
to give, and we had a sort of showdown meeting. They
gave me the history, and I said, "I'm not interested in
history. You've given me the responsibility of dealing with
this faculty, dealing with the student body. Over time I'm
going to deal with a whole cycle of students. And at the
very least, I ought to be there to give them their degree
there." Well, we debated back and forth, and I absolutely
stood firm on this matter. Then they changed it to the
honorary degree. Well, the honorary degree is not given
by the campus. It's given by the regents. It's given
for the whole university. I said, "Okay. Let the president
give the honorary degree. That's got the glamour anyway.
That's the distinguished individual. But the chancellor,
in my case, I^ want to give the local degree."
In the beginning, they were unwilling to give all
this, so they played a very clever game. This thing was
still in debate; I was still hot. And about a month
before the commencement, they called up from Berkeley and
said that the president had discovered that he had a conflict
of dates and that he couldn't come, and would I give the
degrees for him? I said, yes, I'd give the degrees. Well,
then Harry Wellman would come and give the honorary degrees.
I said, "That's all right with me, as long as I give the
degrees in course."
The way that problem finally got resolved was that it
was at least three years before the statewide administration
agreed the chancellor would give degree in course and the
chancellor agreed that the president would give the honor-
ary degree. In all those three years, I gave the degrees
down here, because in those three years President Kerr con-
veniently had a conflict. But by the end of that three
years, the chancellors had decided now to follow me and
help me get autonomy. So at the end of three years, it
was given to all the chancellors, and we finally won that.
MINK: This was attrition, in other words.
MURPHY: Yes. It took three years to kind of beat 'em
down, that's all. But incredible. The chancellor would
not give the degree in course. Well, we won that.
Another issue I remember, a climate. Here I was in
Southern California; remember, that was before Irvine,
before Riverside was anything but a little undergraduate
campus. Santa Barbara was small. UCLA was the University
of California in Southern California. I had been asked
by the regents, by the southern regents especially, and
by the alumni leadership, to really bring the university
into the community. Well, obviously I had to do that, and
this was very — I won't say expensive, but this took enter-
taining; it took using the chancellor's residence for
receptions and this and that; and there was very little
money for expenses. As a matter of fact, in that first
year, before we got the money up, I took it out of my own
pocket — not all, but a lot of it.
I was talking to Ed Carter one time about this and
grumbling, and he was outraged. He said, "I can't believe
that." I said, "It's a fact." He said, "I'm going to look
into it." I said, "As a matter of fact, go beyond that.
Would you please find out how much Kerr has to spend and
how much the chancellor at Berkeley has to spend. Add those
up, and then compare that with what I have to spend for an
even larger population area."
Well, as it turned out, it was an enormous differential,
So the following year, at Regent Carter's insistence, the
statewide administration increased the chancellor at
UCLA's budget for this purpose. But you see, here again,
it would have never happened had there not been some exterior
force that forced them to do it. So when you hear now —
now that we broke through and UCLA's where it is--when you
hear those fellows say what they did to help us, I hope
the record will show that it wasn't that voluntary.
The next thing is an interesting little footnote.
After I'd been operating for a year and we'd changed the
telephone from University of California to UCLA, I changed
the signs on the streets coming in from University of
California to UCLA. And I'd gone through these exercises
about degrees in course and so on. It was perfectly clear
to the Berkeley crowd, as I said, earlier, that they'd
gotten a wolf into the chicken coop. And now all kinds
of efforts were mounted to make me understand that I
should be a team player. I mentioned McHenry driving me
around and so on.
Well, there was a meeting of the regents down here —
I forget which month; it was in my second year, though,
probably, as chancellor. The regents in those days usually
had a dinner where they got together the Thursday night,
the night of the first day of their two-day meeting. And
I say parenthetically, it was all those regents plus the
president; and, of course, the president is a regent. So
it was just regents only. But they would talk about all
kinds of thing, off the record, that related to the campus.
And I really objected to this, and I made my feelings known
to Kerr and Wellman. They said, "Well, the regents want
to talk with themselves." I said, "My God, we're their
chief administrative officers. Are they against us, or
are we all together? Even if we didn't open our mouths,
it would be a good public relations gesture. This is just
good employment practice." Well, it was clear that Kerr
didn't want the chancellors to be visiting with the regents.
They agreed with me. They said, "We don't know why you
shouldn't be there." I said, "Well, you better talk to
the president about it." They obviously did, and I'm sure
that was an additional reason that Kerr and Wellman and
the others were thinking of it as an unsettling force.
Well, finally we got a call one day that on this
particular regents' meeting, which was to be down here,
chancellors were invited. And I went to it. It was in the
Bel-Air Hotel. And I thought it was just going to be
friendly — you know, have some drinks and sit around the
table and talk. The drinks went very quickly. The dinner
went very quickly. And Kerr announced that they would now
retire to the next room to discuss the structure of the
university — nothing said in advance about this to me. So
we go in there, and the chairs are all laid out; it was
obviously planned well ahead. And Clark got up and spoke
about the University of California, its greatness, and its
greatness because it was one university; and the fact that
it spoke with one voice; and it was the statewide university;
and over the years efforts had been made to fragment it,
but they had been beaten down. You know, the message was
coming through loud and clear to me. And these were a
whole lot of other general phrases that nobody could bas-
ically disagree with, not even I. But you know, double
entendres. And it was clear to me, and I think clear to
the other chancellors and to a lot of the regents — maybe
not to the regents, but certainly to the other chancellors
who were close to this matter — that he was really zeroing
in on me. Lots of efforts, I repeat, had been made to
fragment it, but those had been overcome, and the regents
had taken strong positions to maintain the unity of the
Then he finished, and then, out of the clear blue
sky, he turned to me and said, "Now, Chancellor Murphy,
would you care to comment? Would you express your views
in this matter?" Well, you know, this was really put up.
Now, whether the rest of it was put up, I don't know. This
much clearly was put up. Let me tell you what happened.
I got up and I said, "Well, you know, I cannot disagree
basically with President Kerr." Quite honestly, when I
tell you what I said, this was my philosophy then; it's
my philosophy today. I said, "I do believe that the
strength of the University of California is related to the
fact that it is one system with one board of regents, with
one voice to the legislature, with one voice to the master
plan, and that it is a situation where the sum of the parts
is greater than the whole." But I said, "On the other hand,
I want to make it quite clear that I think this university
is no stronger than its weakest link. It is a university
that has evolved enormously in the last ten or fifteen
years in size, in visibility, and in function; and the
UCLA campus," I said, "is as large as many state univer-
sities in total. It is in one of the great population
centers in the country. I believe the regents, the pres-
ident, and the chancellors must work to develop a situation
in which the president, the office of the president, is
respected as the chief administrative officer of the system,
but that the office of the chancellor is a great deal more
than merely that of a representative on the campus. He
has to be strong, and he has to have the authority to match
his responsibility." [tape recorder turned off] So in
effect, I stated that I believed in the system but that I
thought the system was askew in balance of authority. And
I thought I'd be perfectly honest, and I more than once
said that I thought the office of the president should be
maintained with dignity and integrity and influence, etc.
I merely said that in balance, you ought to increase the
authority and responsibility of the chancellor.
MINK: May I ask you something? Do you think, in a sense,
that Kerr visualized this as sort of a showdown with
MURPHY: Well, in a sense. Let me tell you what happened,
and then we'll see how we interpret it, because this
is only a part of it. Yes, I think it was partly that, but
let me come back to that.
One other thing I pointed out in this connection:
I said, "You know, UCLA's a very large and complicated
thing, as is Berkeley — the campus, that is." And I said,
"You know, unless you do have a strong chancellor — and
you can't have a strong chancellor unless he's got authority
--not only are you going to not have happen what you want
to have happen" (and I must say I didn't realize what I
was saying when I said it) , "unless he is strong and has
the image of authority, you could conceivably have chaotic
conditions on these campuses." I think that came up to
haunt somebody in the subsequent difficulties.
I'd scarcely sat down when Harry Wellman stood up and
said, "Mr. President, I want to respond to that." And then
he really laced in, became almost personal. I obviously
had no understanding of what made the university great;
there was no way to substantially increase the authority
of the chancellor without eroding the authority of the
president's office; there were and there had been evidences
of fragmentation; and there ought to be some understanding
on the part of the officers of the university of this
great tradition, etc., etc., etc.
Well, he had scarcely sat down when Jesse Steinhart. . . .
And I'll never forget this. Jesse Steinhart, as you know,
was a part of that ancient old Steinhart family in San
Francisco. All of them had gone to Berkeley. Jesse
Steinhart was an old man, clearly of that generation that
looked upon the rise of UCLA as a terrible thing, of that
group of San Franciscans that thought Los Angeles wasn't
worth anything anyway — it was filled with Hollywood and
this kind of thing. All the symbolisms of San Francisco
at its greatest and its worst. And Old Blue — one of the
most devoted Berkeley graduates I ever knew — and a very
intimate and close friend of Clark Kerr's. And he got up,
and he blasted me--again, not by name, but there wasn't
any doubt as to who was getting their hide flayed.
And this went on until finally Catherine Hearst got
up and said, "Well, I've heard all of this, but I'll have
to tell you, Jesse, and I'll have to tell you, Harry,
I don't think you precisely heard what Dr. Murphy was
saying, because this is not my reaction to what he said.
I rather think that what he had to say didn't go in the
direction of wanting to fragment the university. I didn't
hear anything about five boards of regents," and so forth
and so on. I'll always be grateful to Catherine for that.
Then someone else--I believe it was Canaday — got up
and seconded what Catherine was saying, and said, "I don't
really know why we're having this meeting. President Kerr.
If we're to discuss the structure of the university, we
should discuss it not in these kind of generalities. And
I think Dr. Murphy has a right to express his view. Maybe
there should be modifications. Maybe this institution has
grown in such a way that we'll have to modify our adminis-
trative structure." And at that point, somebody else
said, "Well, now let's get on to the next subject" — what-
ever that was.
I was so angry, and I must say really hurt, that at
that point I just got up and walked out. And somebody
said — it may have been Wellman or Kerr — "Well, now we're
on to another subject," ROTC or something. And I said,
"I'm sure that you'll be able to deal with that quite
effectively in my absence as in my presence. Goodnight,
and I'll see you at the regents' meeting tomorrow." I
was really bitter. I was bitter, but I was angry. I
wasn't defeatist at that moment. I went home, told my
wife what had happened, and she had just had an experience-
one of the experiences I described yesterday with Mrs.
Kerr — and so we both sort of went to bed very depressed.
Well, the next morning, I went to the regents' meeting,
and Bill Forbes and two or three other people got me aside
and said, "Now, look, don't do anything hastily. It was
a terrible thing to do. Mrs. Chandler said the same.
We know precisely what your views are; we think they're
sound. You and Dr. Kerr ought to get together and nego-
tiate this thing out." And I said, "Look, I'm ready
to negotiate anytime. The problem is, they don't move.
They don't move except under pressure."
Now, this episode clearly was staged. First of all,
I was given no advance notice, nor were any of the other
chancellors. Secondly, we'd never been invited to a dinner
before. Why, all of a sudden, that particular dinner?
Clearly, Harry Wellman had been told to perform.
MINK: Sort of a Nixon-Agnew kind of a thing. Wellman
was speaking for Kerr, saying the things that Kerr per-
sonally couldn't say.
MURPHY: That's it precisely, precisely. He was Kerr's
spokesman. He was a ventriloquist's Charlie McCarthy.
But the one thing that really shook me was Jesse Steinhart.
Jesse is a nice man; he and I got along well. He didn't
care anything about UCLA, but he didn't vote against us.
All he wanted to know was what's happening at Berkeley.
It was as though UCLA wasn't there. But now, all of a
sudden, overnight — he never privately got me aside and
said, "Now, look, Franklin, you're getting a little too
energetic." So I have to believe — but in all fairness,
I don't know for certain — I have to believe that he was a
part of the orchestrated act. I think that Kerr got the
first message at that time that it was going to be very
tough to get the wolf out of the chicken coop when he
saw Catherine Hearst and John Canaday, and I'm sure after
the meeting some of the others went to him and said, you
know, "Why?" And then he suddenly realized that the
regents — a lot of the regents, anyway--supported my views,
thought well of me as a person, and were not bound to follow
his lead, or at least would be open-minded about modifica-
tions — the regents, that is — in terms of these traditional
techniques of administering. Now, have you got a question?
MINK: The question I think you've pretty well answered,
and that was whether you thought that this was an intentional
MURPHY: Kerr was never a man [for a showdown] and never
will be. You know, he's a labor negotiator.
MINK: He was an arbitrator, I know.
MURPHY: And I think the last thing Kerr ever wanted was
a one-to-one showdown. There were plenty of opportunities.
But Clark — I'll give him credit for this, because I think
this is sound in human relations — Clark was never one to
create a situation where the two parties couldn't somehow,
sidewise, back out to come back another day. But in my
mind, there isn't the slightest doubt that this was contrived
to get a message to me.
MINK: Did you make you administrators aware of this?
MURPHY: I kept very little back ever from Chuck Young,
Foster Sherwood, and Bill Young. I didn't go beyond that.
I didn't tell the deans or people like that. Whether
I've related this particular incident, I can't tell you.
I probably did to one or more of them. I may not have.
I must say, I was as hurt and as humiliated and as angry
and depressed when I went home that evening as I've been
for a long, long time. But you bounce back the next day.
There are several other little points I want to put in here
before I get to the confrontation. My memory is not as
good as a computer. All I can assure you is that there
were literally hundreds of these kinds of little episodes.
MINK: Needling things.
MURPHY: Needling — sometimes Kerr directly; more often
somebody speaking for him or thinking they were speaking
for him and protecting the power that that little group
had gotten. You see, Kerr was away a lot. He delegated
a lot of stuff. He had budget officers up there — vice-
presidents and a whole coterie of people — who were playing
God with Kerr's delegated authority. And they would
play the same game that Kerr would play with me. Kerr
and Wellman would say, "The regents want this." But these
second-level bureaucrats would say to me, "The president
wants this," you see.
So this happened over and over and over again. It
not only happened to me — it happened to Sherwood, it hap-
pened to Chuck Young, it happened to Bill Young — and it
was just a constant harassment. Sure, we could have stopped
the harassment by just sitting back and saying, "Okay, we're
just a group of kind of third-rate administrators down here.
Tell us what to do." I think in the beginning Bill Yoiing
and Foster really didn't think I'd lay on this battle,
because people had before and lost it; but after a year,
when they saw I wasn't going to give, and was not going
to be denied [what was] reasonable, they swung all the
way around, and they were in there loyally. They were
fighting their counterparts in Berkeley with this harassment
as much as I was.
MINK: I was going to observe that I think in my experiences
with Bill Young, interviewing him, he's a pretty hard-nosed
MURPHY: That's right.
MINK: He doesn't take any bull.
MURPHY: That's right. Not from me or anybody else. But
in the beginning, they were all taking it. They had been
accustomed to taking it. Anyway, once they realized that
I wasn't going to cave in and leave them out on a limb,
then we really got geared up. Okay.
Now let me tell you some of the problems that I began
identifying. And I explained this to the regents all the
way along. The first one in the system, inherent in the
system, was the built-in conflict of interest, with the
president of the university having been the Berkeley
chancellor and appointing the chancellor. Now, the conflict
of interest was that the president of the university was
physically located in Berkeley. Sproul was the prototype.
Sproul was, in effect, the president of the university and
the Berkeley chancellor, because Sproul didn't have a
chancellor. You remember, the first Berkeley chancellor
was Clark Kerr.
MINK: He had a provost. [Monroe] Deutsch.
MURPHY: That's right. Yes, Deutsch. But he [Sproul] was
MINK: He was sort of a figurehead, more or less.
MURPHY: Yes. He was running Berkeley, Sproul was. As
a matter of fact, he was running UCLA, living down here and
this sort of thing. Finally, as you know, the chancellor-
ship was forced upon Sproul — the concept of the chancellor-
ship. To get one down here, in order to save face, they
got one at Berkeley and they got one at Santa Barbara.
But you must remember that Sproul appointed that person.
He lived in that house, the president's house. He leaves;
Kerr becomes president. He doesn't want to move into it.
He appoints somebody that he can manipulate and control
totally. And symbolically, that house on the campus was
left empty. That's a huge symbolism. We'll come to that
later when I tell you about the Roger Heyns . He was the
first chancellor to live in that house. Anyway, they
appointed the first chancellor, Glenn Seaborg. Glenn
was a Nobel Prize winner with a lot of glamour and no
administrative experience whatsoever.
MINK: He was a UCLA man in his undergraduate years.
MURPHY: He was an undergraduate, yes. But basically
he was a Berkeley fellow. Glenn didn't like administration.
He wasn't good at it, either. He didn't like it. So in
those early meetings, when I was fighting to get the
chancellors more authority, Glenn Seaborg always sided
with Kerr. And what he would say, I'll never forget. He
said, "I don't want to become a full-time administrator."
Imagine! He said, "My schedule--and I want you to know
this — I'm a scholar first and an administrator second.
And my schedule is that I spend two days a week in the
chancellor's office and three days in my laboratory."
Well, the way he ran the place and what happened at
Berkeley was evidence of the fact that there was somebody
But basically that's what Kerr wanted to hear, be-
cause Kerr had this desire. As I told you earlier, I
wouldn't take the presidency of the university, because
the most interesting part of a university job is the cam-
pus — the faculty, the students, the dynamics of it, seeing
departments grow, libraries grow, and so on. Kerr really
wanted to be, subconsciously, the Berkeley chancellor
and have that fun, and be the president of the university
with that authority. And that was an absolutely intoler-
able conflict of interest. And it was a guarantee that
he couldn't be objective, either about authority to the
chancellor or equity between Berkeley and UCLA. When
Glenn Seaborg left to go to Washington and the Atomic
Energy Commission, he then appointed his old friend Ed
Strong, who followed and quoted his line completely.
MINK: Chapter, line, and verse.
MURPHY: And Ed was a philosopher. He'd never administered
a department, hardly. And again, that's precisely what
MINK: When you say "appointed," this was simply that
there was no list drawn up. The regents were just given
MURPHY: That's correct. That is absolutely correct.
MINK: It was sort of pro forma.
MURPHY: Pro forma. In that case.
MINK: And yet with the other chancellors, they would
have search committees. It doesn't seem exactly equit-
MURPHY: Well, but, you know, if you're running a show,
you can manipulate and you can say that nobody wants the
job and this and that. Okay.
All that time, that house on the campus remained
empty. Incidentally, Ed Strong, at these meetings, would
jump on me, say he didn't need the authority and that was
a larger campus — why did I? Stuff like that. Until, of
course, he and Kerr had their split. You talk to Ed
Strong today and get quite a different picture. John
Saunders, I remember, he was even more of a sycophant.
"Oh, yes, I don't need any more authority," and "If we
give the authority we'll...." He said all the things Kerr
wanted to hear. When Kerr fired him, or was told to fire
him by the regents — I don't know which it was — Saunders
suddenly saw the reality. And somebody ought to take his
oral history, if indeed you've got asbestos tape; for
then, he would tell me what he had been told to say.
He'd been programmed. He had been told what I might
probably say at a chancellor's meeting and what he then
was to say in rebuttal. He's told me this more than once.
So that the chancellors at that time were inarticu-
late, frightened, I think, to some extent by the president.
They'd all been appointed by him or they assumed that he
could get the regents to fire 'em. They assumed that if
they were good they'd get their budgets improved, and
all this kind of thing. And Kerr used them. It wasn't
until about the third year that the chancellors really
began to speak up, and the first one to come along and
support me was Emil Mrak at Davis. And in the end, he
was a tower of strength in our struggle to get for the
chancellors — not just for UCLA, not just for me — but
to get a workable system within the system. In the end,
we were all together. I was the spokesman. But in the
beginning, I was a very lonely spokesman. I don't resent
it. I just resent the fact that it was all so unnecessary.
Okay, these were the notes that I made, and we'll come
back to some of these later.
MINK: Was there any particular reason that caused Emil
to see the light?
MURPHY: Well, I think there were two reasons. First of
all, you know, Emil was an Old Blue through and through.
He went to Berkeley, got his graduate degrees at Berkeley;
his wife was a Berkeley graduate. But I think when he
saw Kerr beginning to move to put the resources in the
new campuses and not permit Davis to develop into a general
campus university, he then began to realize that his hopes
for Davis would not be achieved unless he spoke up. Further-
more, by that time Kerr was away so much, making speeches
and consulting in the government and so on, that Mrak was
now dealing with the second level, and he was furious with
these people — the budget officers and the others that were
telling him what he could and couldn't do, and always saying
"The president says this and that. " Emil would talk to me
and say, "Franklin, you know, Clark doesn't want this.
Just some bureaucrat does." I said, "Why don't you ask
him?" "Well, I can't get hold of him. He's a very busy
man." Finally, I said one day, "Emil, listen, wake up
to the fact: you know damn well Clark wants this, or
these fellows wouldn't be saying it. You've written him
letters; you've made phone calls; you've talked to him.
You get doubletalk, but it's still happening, isn't it?"
He said, "Yes." Then I said, "What conclusion does an
intelligent man draw?" "Well," he said, "I just can't
believe that Clark would say one thing and really not
mean it." I said, "Well, you're going to have to draw
your own conclusions." I said, "All I ask you is to be
totally objective. That's all."
Well, finally, he came around, and he said, "Franklin,
you know, you're right. We've got to fight if we're going
to get the kind of authority and responsibility that permits
us to make some campus decisions." He was more apologetic
for Clark than I ever was, which was okay. Maybe I'm over-
reacting; that's an absolute possibility. He would say,
"I think Clark really doesn't want to confront his own
people. I think he really believes that I should have
this and this and this authority, but his own people have...."
"Well," I said, "then there's only one thing for you to do,
and that's just to force it." And he agreed. So he was the
Sara Gould came in about that time. He was helpful.
Unfortunately, he left, for some of the reasons I mentioned
earlier. John Saunders, never, because before he realized
the truth and the reality, he was out. Ed Strong, never,
because when he realized the truth, he was locked in a
life-and-death struggle with Clark about the Berkeley campus
and the riots, and he really couldn't think about anything
else. Subsequently, Strong has told me that he really
knew I was absolutely right and felt he was not in a position
to do anything about it.
Okay, that's part of this climate. And if you say,
"Well, gee, that sounds like a chronic struggle; was it
really that all the time?" I'll have to tell you, it
was. Now, this is not stuff that was in the Daily Bruin
or in the Los Angeles Times , because a lot of this was
locked behind doors, and you don't give press releases
about this sort of thing.
MINK: How visible was it to the governor and to the
speaker of the assembly?
MURPHY: Very invisible.
MINK: And the other politicos?
MURPHY: I think as far as the politicos were concerned,
it was quite invisible. I don't think they ever realized
that Kerr and I were having this battle, because publicly
I was always supporting Kerr, always supporting him. I
made speeches about this gifted man, this good president.
Kerr in the end — and I'm getting ahead of my story--fre-
quently turned to me; for example, he had a real problem
of getting the regents to agree to eliminate compulsory
ROTC. And he finally came to me. Wellman, I think, told
him to. He said, "Look, I need your support on this.
There are three or four regents whose votes I've got to
have, and I'm not going to get them unless you help me."
I said, "I'll help you." I talked to them privately,
and stood up at the meeting, and fought with Ed Pauley,
my old friend; and we got that through. There were other
things like that. Publicly, I never, to the very end,
turned my back on Clark. I thought it was totally unfair
to do so, and I did my fighting privately. And in public,
if I fought at all, it was in his behalf — including, as
you'll discover later, saving his job a year before he lost
it and so on.
Okay, now, the famous Charter Day episode. From the
time I'd come, I inherited the concept of Charter Day.
I began to get restless about it. I said, you know, "Charter
Day. Well, that's the foundation of the University of
California, that's true, but it's really the foundation of
the Berkeley campus." I said, "Sure, we'll celebrate that,
but we've got to have our own day, when UCLA was founded" —
forty-fifth [anniversary] or whatever it was when I came.
So I began working with the Alumni Association on this one.
Doug Kinsey was here at the time — or maybe it was even when
Harry Longway was here I started on it. I talked to the
Aliomni Association, which parenthetically I found weak
and underfinanced, by and large.
One of the things I worked very hard on, and I think
fairly successfully, was to make these people understand
that if they were going to have an Alumni Association to
match the quality and the size of this institution, or the
Berkeley one, they had to put money in it, they had to get
adequate quarters. Let's talk about that later; that's an
interesting story unto itself, starting fund raising and
getting the Alumni Association reorganized.
Anyway, I began talking with these people about doing
our own thing, not in lieu of, but in addition to. Well,
finally word got up to Berkeley that we were thinking of
having, in the spring, a celebration of the foundation of
the UCLA campus. So I got the word: "What's this all about?"
"Well," I said, "we want to take note of the fact that forty-
five years ago UCLA was founded." "Well, don't we have a
Charter Day?" I said, "Sure, that's the University of Cali-
fornia. We'll do both." Well, they were restless about it,
especially since by that time the student body had decided
to choose as their song — and I encouraged them behind the
scenes — Hail to the Hills of Westwood. I wanted them to have
a song that was theirs. That upset the people at Berkeley
a lot. They said, "Well, what about the University of Cali-
fornia song?" I said, "Well, the kids can sing that. Let
the kids sing what they want. This is their campus. I'm
not going to tell them what to sing or what not to sing."
I said, "I can assure you that at Charter Day that will be
sung, because that is a University of California thing."
Well, of course, the chancellor's role in Charter Day
was zero when I arrived. The theory here was, the president
came down, took the whole thing over, made the speech. What
the chancellor did--and I did it the first time — the most he
was asked to do was to present one of the candidates for the
honorary degree. The president made the speech, and the
president presided. So after going through the first one
of these exercises, I sat down with the people — in this
case Earl Bolton, who'd been hired by that time as vice-
president for ceremonies and everything--and I said, "Earl,
look. I think the chancellor ought to preside." "No, no,
no; this is a university day." I said, "What the hell, am
I a part of the university or not? This is my campus."
I said, "I ought to preside, and I'll introduce the presi-
dent. He can make the speech; he can give the honorary
degrees. All I do is just welcome the people on my campus."
Well, that seemed to be a very complicated problem. I kept
pressing this, pressing it, and finally, I guess to get me
off their neck, they agreed. It was modified to that extent.
So, I guess starting with the second or third Charter Day,
at least I presided.
Secondly, when I presided, what I did was to welcome
these people, and I spoke for about five minutes. "I
welcome you here today to UCLA" — a little bit about UCLA,
this and that and the other. Well, I was accused of having
made a speech rather than presiding. I said, "Well, listen.
This is like angels on the head of a pin. If my welcoming
comments are five minutes or three minutes, just say I'm
too articulate. But I didn't make a speech. I made some
opening comments. This is what I say." I then said, "Look.
You've given me a good idea. Earl. I think the chancellor
should make some comments." So I said, "I think what I'm
going to do, I'm going to extend this to about eight minutes."
"Well, I'll have to check with the president." I said.
"You just tell the president that my opening comments are
going to be a little longer than usual. I'll not duplicate
anything he says. I'm not going to talk about the statewide
So gradually that's the way Charter Day evolved, and
I never went beyond that. I never demanded more than that,
because I did believe that the center of attraction was the
president. I, as chancellor, on behalf of the campus,
welcomed him to one of his campuses. I introduced him. I
usually was very fulsome in my introduction and then
turned the whole thing over to him. Well, they couldn't
really object to that, finally. (And incidentally, I had
a little regents' help on that, too.)
The next kind of an operation was that after Charter
Day, there was a luncheon, always a luncheon. And tradi-
tionally, the Alumni Association laid on the lunch. The
Alumni Association would seat at the head table the honor-
ary degree fellows, the president, the chancellor, and so
on. They made all the arrangements. So that went on for
several years, till we came to whatever year it was of the
[Adolf o] Lopez Mateos-Lyndon Johnson.
TAPE NUMBER: III, Side 1
OCTOBER 19, 1973
MURPHY: Well, came this famous Charter Day. There are so
many elements, but let me try to remember what I can about
it. John Kennedy had been assassinated, and Lyndon Johnson
was the new president of the United States. Ed Pauley,
Regent Pauley, had for many years been a close friend of
Lyndon Johnson. So Pauley got the idea — I think this whole
thing really originated with Ed Pauley — that it would be a
great thing early in Johnson's administration for the uni-
versity to give him an honorary degree. Pauley, at that
time, also had a deep interest in Mexico. And in his fertile
mind, he conceived the idea that we should also give Lopez
Mateos, who was then the president [of Mexico], an honorary
degree; and that since Johnson had publicly stated that a
good-neighbor policy in the U.S. was going to be one of the
high points of his administration, why not have Lopez Mateos
and Johnson meet for the first time in California and give
them both an honorary degree.
Well, he talked to Clark Kerr. Pauley was then, I
think, chairman of the board; or even if he weren't, he was
always, as you know, a powerful regent. He also talked with
Governor [Edmund G. ] Brown, and Governor Brown thought that
it was a fantastic idea. Brown being a Democrat and Pauley
a Democrat and Johnson a Democrat. Well, needless to say,
Clark Kerr was not about to say no, when the governor and
Pauley said this was a good idea.
Now, Ed Pauley, more than any other regent, had the
habit of dealing directly with me. This infuriated Clark
Kerr, but there was nothing he could do about it; and, for
that matter, there was nothing I could do about it. Pauley
would simply call me up and say, "Look, I want to come to
the campus and talk to you about this or that or the other
So he called me, and he said, "What do you think about
it?" I said, "Fantastic." "Well, now," he said, "I want
to keep you fully informed." I said all right. I called
Clark; thank God I called Clark. I said, "Clark, Ed Pauley
called me, and he told me about this idea. I think it's a
great idea. What's happening?" And Clark was very short
with me. He said, "Well, now, look. Ed Pauley was...
out of line," he called it. "This thing hasn't even been
fully cleared with the regents." And he said, "Don't you
worry about it. We'll take care of it in our office."
I said, "I'm not worried about it. I'm just calling to
tell you that Pauley called me." I couldn't understand
why there was this irrational overreaction.
Okay. The next thing I hear, I'm in my office, and
Ed Pauley calls from Mexico City. And he said, "I've just
talked to Lopez Mateos's secretary, and he's interested in
the idea. And I'm going to fly to Washington to talk to
Lyndon Johnson. Now, tell me what are the best dates?"
So I quickly look at the calendar, and I figure out some
dates, and I say, "Well, I think this or this or this would
be fine." Again, I immediately call Clark Kerr, and I say,
"I've just heard from Ed Pauley from Mexico City," and I
relate the conversation. Kerr is extremely short. "Well,
why didn't he call me?" I said, "Clark, I don't know.
Believe me, I don't know. You'll have to ask him." "But,"
I said, "you're learning it within five minutes after I
learned it." I said, "As a matter of fact, if Ed's going
to independently operate this way, he may be calling me
again, and I promise you you'll hear as you have in the past
— immediately, if he calls." "Well," he said, "I should
be doing this." I said, "Clark, I really think so. But
that's your problem with Ed Pauley. There's nothing I can
do about Ed Pauley. Why don't you call him up?" He said,
"Well, where is he?" I said, "Well, he's on his way to
Washington, I gather — that's what he told me — to talk to
Well, whether Clark ever called him or not, I don't
know, because about three or four days later, Pauley calls
me — now from Los Angeles — saying that Johnson has agreed
in principle. And now the problem is to work out the dates.
And he said, "Now, will you get after this?" I said,
"Ed, I can't do this. The president's office ought to do
it." "Well," he said, "then will you get him to do it?"
So I call Clark Kerr, and I relate this conversation.
Well, needless to say, he's furious. I don't blame him.
But I'm an innocent party in this whole damned thing. So
I say, "Clark, really, would you call Ed and take this
thing over? Because, look, it ought to be in one place."
He said okay, he would. And I said, "Seeing all the formal
letters and invitations have to go out, I would like to
suggest some dates because of scheduled problems down here
and so on." And I gave him the same dates. And I said,
"Now, they've obviously got to relate to your calendar.
Would you check?" Tmd he checked, and yes, two or three
of them would be okay. I said, "Well, I hope this is the
last time I hear about the invitations and getting this
Well, they went ahead, and they wrote the letters
from Berkeley, and the agreement was made — they picked
a date. Well, when Kerr informed me of this, of the date,
I called together our people — Andy Hamilton; I got Bob
Neiomann into the act, because Bob was very knowledgeable
about protocol and he was the head of our foreign educa-
tion program at that time; and I got all of the other
people that would normally be concerned with planning;
and I got the Alumni Association into the act. I think
Tom Davis was involved in that. Tom Davis was a regent,
I guess, at that time, and he was centrally involved as
an alumnus. Wasn't he president of the Alumni Association?
And I said, "You fellows had better get busy, because this
is going to be quite a lunch."
MINK: It was quite a day.
MURPHY: And quite a day.
MURPHY: And Tom said, "Well, look, we're going to have to
rely a lot on you and your office and Judy"; and I said,
"Look, we'll do anything we can, but please take this
Well, the first thing that happened was that some
Secret Service people came out from Washington, very far
in advance, to look the place over. And I assigned our
police department, buildings and grounds people to it and
so on. The next thing I get is a phone call from Berkeley
in which they say, "We understand that some Secret Service
people are there. Why weren't we informed?" And I said,
"Well, you know, this is a mechanical thing." "Well, we
haven't agreed on where this should be held." I said,
"Well, I told you. We're going to hold it in the athletic
field. We're going to have to build some bleachers."
"Well, you don't have the budget for that." I said, "I
know. I'm going to ask the regents for $25,000." "Well,
why aren't we brought into this more?" I said, "Well, all
right, how do you want to be brought into it?" "Well, we
want to know whenever there are any inquiries."
MINK: Who were these people that were calling?
MURPHY: I can't remember. Some functionary. It wasn't
Kerr. Earl Bolton, I think, probably. So the next thing
that happened was that I'd asked Bob Neumann to find out
from the State Department, and from the local Mexican
consul and whomever was involved, some protocol things.
I said, "Develop a memo here about who has priority, senior-
ity, and so forth." Well, Bob made a couple of calls to
Washington and the State Department, just about mechanical,
protocol-type things, and to the Mexican consul.
Then again I got a phone call, "What's Neumann doing?
We understand that Bob Neumann is taking over the arrange-
ments." I said, "No, he isn't taking over the arrangements."
Finally, this got so harassing that I went to Berkeley, and
I got hold of Kerr, and I said, "Look. This thing is becoming
extremely difficult." I said, "Would you please assign some-
body on your staff as the person, and we will deal directly
with him and he deals directly with us. And then he can
report to you — someone that you have total confidence in —
because here we are with an enormously complicated thing,
for which we're responsible, lying ahead of us. We have to
make plans; we have to call people. We've got people coming
out to see us. We have to give instant decisions. And we
can't have this caught up in this statewide bureaucracy.
I'm not going to consult with your building man on putting
the bleachers up and another fellow on this and another
fellow on this. Put somebody in charge." He said, "All
right, I'll put Earl Bolton in charge." I said fine.
I told Andy Hamilton that he was to deal with Earl Bolton;
I told Bob Neumann he was to deal with Earl Bolton.
In the meantime — and I've got this correspondence —
Kerr wrote Bob Neiomann one of the nastiest letters I've
ever read in my life, accusing him of going far beyond his
authority. It was an irrational letter. Neumann was hurt.
He came in, and he said, "What does this mean?" I read it.
I said, "Bob, I haven't the vaguest idea, but" I said,
"these people in Berkeley are up so tight about this that
you can't imagine it." He said, "What shall I do?" I said,
"You sit down and write Clark Kerr the same kind of a letter.
You say in paragraph one this: 'It is not true. This is
what the facts are.'" I said, "Kerr has obviously been
misinformed and badly informed." And he wrote such a letter
and sent me a copy of it, which I have along with the copy
of the original letter that he wrote to Neumann.
Well, about this time, our people were working desper-
ately to get things up and work with the Secret Service and
so on. And Andy was loyally trying to work with Earl
Bolton. Earl Bolton was really throwing his weight around.
Well, we were able to take that until Kay Kerr got into
the act about the luncheon. And Bolton was starting to
say, "Now, Mrs. Kerr wants this; and Mrs. Kerr is going
to do that; and Mrs. Kerr, as you know, is the official
hostess for this thing; and she wants this at the lunch;
and she doesn't want this at the lunch," and so forth and
so on. So we got hold of Tom Davis, and I said, "Tom,
you know, you're planning this and that, but that isn't
what Mrs. Kerr wants." "What the hell has Mrs. Kerr got
to do with it?" I said, "Well, you should know this."
Tom got furious. And I said, "You're a regent. You go
directly to the president." Andy had informed him of this
as well as I. Tom had said, "You know, all they're doing
is creating terrible problems for us; and after all, this
is our lunch, not theirs."
Well, Bolton apparently was confused about this. He
thought, in the beginning, that Mr. and Mrs. Kerr were
putting on the lunch, and therefore Mr. and Mrs. Kerr wanted
this and this and this and that's what they were going to
have. Incidentally, the whole lunch was, in a sense, built
around Clark and Kay Kerr; and then the two presidents and
their cabinets were coming along and so on. And the rest
of us were, you know, out in the audience.
Apparently, Davis and Kerr had a real set-to about
this. And, in a sense, Kerr took it out on me, because
the implication is — he had his underlings talk to me,
especially Bolton — that I had put the Alumni Association
up to this and that they were acting as a front. And they
even brought my wife into it, who was an innocent bystander —
that the Alumni Association are running interference for
you and Mrs. Murphy, but Dr. and Mrs. Kerr are the host
and hostess. And I said, "Earl, let me make one thing
clear to you. I never assumed I was the host — least of
all, Mrs. Murphy the hostess. I must explain to you that
from the very beginning — and this is like it's been every
other year — the Alumni Association is the host. "Well,"
he said, "that isn't the way Dr. Kerr views it." I said,
"You'd better talk to him, and, again, tell him to decide
right now whether he wants to change the tradition. And
if he does, you have him tell Mr. Davis, tell the UCLA
alumni people. Leave me out of it. I'll be there. I'll
be sitting somewhere, I guess." "Well," he said, "you should
talk to Davis." I said, "I won't do it. You guys got into
this; you've created all of this dust." I said, "Now,
listen. If you had left this to us and the president — he
issued the invitations; we would have made all the arrange-
ments. Hell, we've done this before. We're not children
down here. And we would have sat down with you, worked
out the program the way you wanted it. It would have been
very simple." And I said, "Really, the real problem here
is that President and Mrs. Kerr have thrown themselves
into this as though this were happening at Berkeley. But
it isn't." So he went back. I don't know how he phrased
it with Kerr.
Oh, then there was the question of the press release.
The announcement. That had come a bit earlier, and that
had really been an issue, too, because the press release
said, "President Clark Kerr announced today that at Charter
Day at UCLA, honorary degrees will be given..." etc., etc.,
etc. "President Kerr says that..." and then there's a quo-
tation of a lot of things that he said — "a landmark day in
the history of the University of California," etc. — and no
comment by the UCLA chancellor. Andy brought it in to me.
He said, "This is what Al Pickerell sent down." I read the
damned thing, and I said, "Look, I'm not going to approve
it. They've got to put in there — and you write it; I don't
give a damn what's said — they've got to say, 'and Chancellor
Franklin D. Murphy comments that for UCLA this is a great
day, ' and so forth. Put it at the end. But it has to be
Parenthetically, when I'm through with this story,
remind me to come back and tell you about the hassles we
had about the announcements, both on Charter Day appointees
and the appointment of presidents and deans. We'll come
to that in a moment.
Well, they sent it back to Pickerell, and Pickerell
took it in to Kerr; and I assume that Kerr blew up and
said, "That damned Murphy. Can't he leave things alone?" —
or something. Anyway, this was a real hassle. Finally
they decided yes, they'd give me one line.
MURPHY: It was a real struggle just to get in there at
all. Okay. Then came this Bolton thing and the hassle
about the luncheon — the question of whether Dr. and Mrs.
Kerr were the hosts or Dr. and Mrs. Murphy; my saying that
we never intended to be, it was the Alumni Association.
The next thing that happens is, I'm in Kansas City at a
Hallmark board meeting, and Andy or Chuck or somebody
called me and said, "The president has announced that
he's not going to attend Charter Day at UCLA and is so
going to advise the regents. We just had a call." I
said, "Oh, what's the problem?" "Well, he simply says
that since UCLA has taken the whole thing over, he doesn't
wish to be a part of it." I get on the phone; I call Kerr;
and I finally get him. And I said, "What's this I hear?"
He said, "Absolutely." He said, "You've taken this out
of our hands completely, and," he said, "I don't want to
have any responsibility or any part of it. And Mrs. Kerr
feels the same way." Well, I said, "Clark, I don't know
what you're talking about," and I repeated that Earl Bolton
had been fully informed and we were reacting. And the pro-
gram was precisely the way--he was going to introduce the
two, and he was going to give the honorary degrees, and he
was going to make the speech. And I said, "What's the prob-
lem?" "Well, this luncheon. Apparently you and Mrs. Murphy
insist on being host and hostess." I said, "Look, Bolton
has either lied to you, or he hasn't told you the facts.
We never intended to be." I said, "Clark, you know that
this has been the Alumni Association's responsibility."
"Well, that's just a front." "Well," I said, "it wasn't
a front before. Why wasn't it last year or the year before?"
"Well, this is different. These are two heads of state.
This is a unique moment in the history of the University of
California." "Well," I said, "make your peace with Davis,
not with me." "Well," he said, "you should make the peace."
But he said, "Furthermore, I'm just through with it."
"Well," I said, "do the regents know this?" He said, "I've
written them a letter today, all the regents." And I said,
"Would you mind sending me a copy?" And he said, "Yes, I'll
send you a copy." He said, "Furthermore, you and I have got
to come to an understanding about our relationship to this
university." He said, "You have demanded all kinds of things
since you've been here. We've given you more than anybody
has ever been given. And each time we give you something,
you want two more." And he said, "At some point we have to
sit down and decide what you think you need, and I've got
to tell you what you can get and what you can't get; and
at that point, then some fundamental decisions have to be
made." I said, "I'd be delighted. You just write me the
letter, tell me...." He said, "You write me your letter
first." And I said, "I'll do it."
I went back to Los Angeles, and I found a copy of his
letter, I found phone calls from Pauley and Carter and I
don't know who. So I put in the phone calls, and they asked
me what the problem was, and I tried to tell them. I called
Tom Davis, and I told him, and he was furious. That's when
Kerr lost Davis forever. And I said, "Would you call Clark
and try to convince him that I haven't been using you, which
he accuses me of doing?" You know, Tom didn't like to be
accused of being used by anyone. I called Pauley and ex-
plained it to Pauley, and Pauley said, "This is ridiculous.
I'm going to call Kerr and order him to be there." And I
said, "Do whatever you want, Ed. "
MINK: He could, too.
MURPHY: He did. What he did, as I understand it, was to
call two or three other regents, tell them what he was going
to do, and urge them to do the same. So three days later,
Kerr changed his opinion. In the meantime, Tom Davis had
called him, first of all gave him hell, and finally said,
"What are we planning that you don't want, you and Mrs. Kerr?"
Well, as it turned out, it really wasn't very much; and
really, I think there was a breakdown in communications
due to Bolton. I think Bolton took his role too seriously.
I think he really was trying to make points with Kerr, and
especially Mrs. Kerr, by in effect saying, "This is going
to be your party." So, maybe to a certain extent, Clark
really was misinformed. But the misinformation came because
by that time I don't think Kerr believed anything I said —
or thought there was an ulterior motive.
Well, Charter Day came. The Kerrs came. They got
front billing. I introduced him, and that's the only thing
I did. He did the whole thing. He met the president at
the helicopter and generously introduced the president to
me and so forth and so on. He led the procession. They
sat in the center of the table next to the president and
the Alumni Association. I was at one end, I guess, and he
was at the other. I didn't really care. Everything that
he could have possibly wanted, he had. But this whole
unnecessary episode, reflecting the worst ego problem, and
the worst of the insecurity, and the worst of the (by that
time, I think) deep resentment of my role in the university/
Well, the regents' meeting was scheduled for not long
thereafter down here, and the Pauleys gave a dinner that
Thursday night and invited the chancellors. By this time,
my theory that the chancellors should be invited to these
dinners had taken hold; and, in spite of Kerr, the regents
just invited them. There was nothing he could do about it.
So this became a built-in kind of tradition, which con-
tinues: the chancellors still go to these dinners. Chuck
But during the cocktail hour, Pauley came to me, and
he said, "I want to talk to you and Kerr alone." So he
took us into another room, and he said, "Now, look. This
entire episode was totally unnecessary." He said, "I want
you to know that the regents have the highest respect for
you, Clark." He turned to me, and he said, "Franklin, I
want you to know that the regents have the highest respect
for you. They think the two of you are doing an absolutely
splendid job. But the two of you have got to stop this
feuding." He just scolded us like, you know, little boys.
Kerr was extremely restless and tried to break in on several
occasions, and Pauley said, "Now, just wait till I'm finished."
So he gave us quite a monologic spanking and encouraged
us to behave like adults, etc., etc. Frankly, I thought
I'd been behaving like an adult. Kerr had been a child
about this thing, but that didn't bother me any. And then
he turned to me and said, "Now, are you willing to try to
cooperate?" I said, "Ed, absolutely." He said, "Clark,
are you willing to cooperate with Franklin?" Clark said,
"Well, I am, if he'll just cooperate with me." Ed said,
"He's already said he would." I said, "Well, Ed, just one
moment. I want to make it clear that I shall always speak
up for what I think is proper administration in the univer-
sity, and I'm going to continue to fight--f airly , I hope--
for a situation where the authority matches the responsi-
bility, which I do not think is currently the case."
"What do you mean?" So I talked about appointments and
promotions and a few other things like that.
And then that was over, and we went back in. I
could tell Clark was absolutely furious. He wasn't talking
to anybody, least of all me. He was morose and quiet all
during the dinner; and as soon as it was over, he got up
abruptly [snaps fingers] and left.
MINK: I imagine it was hiomiliating for him, as the pres-
ident of the university, to be talked to in front of a
subordinate, which I'm sure he considered you to be, by
his own boss, who would be the chairman of the Board of
MURHPY: I'm sure you're right. And I suspect if I'd been
in his position I would have felt much the same. But anyway,
that was that episode.
Well, just to continue the Charter Day thing, by this
time, the UCLA event in the spring had gained, as you know,
a lot of momentum. And inevitably. Charter Day began to be
a chore. Furthermore, the problem of getting a truly dis-
tinguished guy was getting more and more difficult. And so
there was little enthusiasm on this campus for the contin-
uance of Charter Day. By this time, the regents, having
seen this kind of friction and this kind of confrontation,
which all of them felt — and incidentally, I think that at
that point Clark Kerr really began his downhill thing.
MINK: He began to lose votes.
MURPHY: That's it. This childlike petulance — you know,
"I won't come because...." You know, when they fully
realized that there was no real reason except a little
bruising of the ego.
MINK: See, I was wondering about other regents. You
always talk about Pauley; you always talk about Canaday,
Forbes occasionally. Carter and Mrs. Chandler. But what
about [Howard C. ] Naffziger? What about [William M.]
MURPHY: Well, Naffziger was gone by then. Long since.
MINK: What about Roth?
MURPHY: Bill was kind of neutral in this thing. Ellie
Heller was sort of believing Clark in the beginning, but in
the middle and the end it shifted because of some of these
kind of episodes. But the core of southern regents — Carter,
Pauley, Canaday, Forbes, Tom Davis; the alumni presidents,
of course--Bob Haldeman and those people when they were
there. . . .
MINK: Simon hadn't come yet?
MURPHY: Simon? Oh, he was.
MINK: I believe he was a regent in '60.
MURPHY: Simon became a regent the year I arrived.
MINK: Yes, I believe that's when he was appointed.
MURPHY: And Simon was always with me on these things,
always — trying to negotiate, but still negotiating in my
behalf. But always supporting Kerr. In other words, I
want to make it clear that in the beginning they were
supportive of Clark as president but of my view, too.
In other words, they weren't choosing between the two of
us. That only came after these episodes, down the road.
In any event, to wind up Charter Day, it was dying
on the vine, anyway. And at that point, Ellie Heller and
some of the others said, "Look. Rather than to have these
kinds of unnecessary confrontations, why don't we just leave
it up to the campuses whether they want it or not?" We had
one more, and I think that's the last Charter Day we had.
MINK: We don't celebrate it.
MURPHY: Yeah. So that's how Charter Day ended.
MINK: They celebrate it, I believe, on the Berkeley campus.
MURPHY: They do. It's a big day in Berkeley. Well,
naturally. It's their equivalent of what we do in the
MINK: It's quite appropriate there.
MURPHY: Yes, of course it is. That is_ the foundation of
Berkeley. On the other campuses, I don't know. I think
maybe they do, because they're smaller and they don't
really have a tradition. I don't think it means very much.
Okay, so much then for the Charter Day.
MINK: You said parenthetically after you talked about that
you wanted to talk about the problems of letters of appoint-
ments for deans and so on.
MURPHY: Oh. [It was] one of the things that we had as a
problem from the beginning, and it finally never really got
solved for about six years. It led to all kinds of after-
math. And Andy Hamilton can tell you a lot about this.
They had at Berkeley, as a public relations fellow in the
statewide office, [a man] called Al Pickerell.
MINK: I know Mr. Pickerell very well.
MURPHY: Unbelievably limited, but a slavish servant, if
you will, and always trying to make points with the boss.
In the beginning, when I was discovering how little author-
ity the chancellor had, along with his lack of any real
authority in promotions or appointments was that when they
were made they were always announced as follows: "President
Clark Kerr announces that the Board of Regents has appointed
so-and-so as such and such at UCLA." So I started out by
saying, "It seems to me the chancellor ought to make this.
So why don't you let the chancellor?" "Well, then what is
there for the president to do?" "Well," I said, "he can
announce the appointment by the regents of chancellors,
vice-chancellors, this and that."
Well, that was a struggle. No, he wouldn't give an
inch. This went on year after year after year, till finally
I got them to agree--and again I think I just wore them
down — that it would be that President Clark Kerr and
Chancellor Franklin D. Murphy announce the appointment of
such and such, which seemed reasonable to me, Kerr first,
We won that, and I thought that whole nonsense was over,
and I assumed that that set a pattern. Andy sends up to
Berkeley a proposed announcement for honorary degrees for
President Clark Kerr. Well, Pickerell says no. No way —
a university thing, only the president can do it. Well,
Andy said, "Look, we've set a pattern or tradition." "No
way." So we had to fight that battle. I kept saying,
"You know, this is so silly. This is ridiculous." And they'd
turn around to me and say, "Of course it is, so why don't you
stop asking?" I said, "It's ridiculous from your point of
view, but it's terrible important from the campus point of
view, because I'm trying to build a pride on the campus.
I've got to let them think down here, in the Academic
Senate and the student body, that I am more than just a
housekeeper, clerk, locally situated." Well, all I can
say on this subject is that here again, [it was] something
that Kerr could have gracefully said. In fact, as I look
back, a lot of these thing, he should have taken on his own
issue and said, "Franklin, you know, traditionally the
president announces these, but I think the chancellor
ought to be included." He'd have lost nothing, you see,
because the way it turned out, he still loses nothing; the
president loses nothing. And my God, think what he would
have gained — not just for me, but Mrak and everybody else,
the greatest guy in the world. Or call up and say, "Look.
You know, you fellows are closer to the campus; I've got
lots of confidence in you; you're doing a great job. I
think I'm going to delegate a lot more of my authority to
appointments and promotions." You'd die for a guy like
Now, parenthetically, I don't know, but there's always
a possibility that Kerr, in rational conversation with me
or Mrak or somebody else, might have come to that conclu-
sion on his own, except for two things. First of all, he
never had time to talk with the chancellors except once a
month at these meetings, and that's no time. I used to say
to him, you know, "Look, I'd like to talk to you about this
issue in depth." "Well, I haven't got time; I'm going here
and there," I'd say, "I'll ride to the airport with you."
"Well, I'm sorry, but I'm riding to the airport with Harry
Wellman; we've got things to do," and so on. He really
never spent time, except with his own staff. Therefore,
you never had the opportunity to explain these things in
any kind of depth. Secondly, his own staff vicariously--
it's like any other staff--were so possessive about the
power they had, because since he wasn't there it was all
delegated, they were doing these things.
MINK: No different than what we saw in the White House.
MURPHY: Precisely. They would, I'm sure, tell him, "Clark,
you can't do this, for this and that reason." Well, Clark
wasn't really doing it in any event. They were doing it
for him. So to delegate that to the campus would mean
that somebody else would do it for him. And they didn't
want to lose it. I'm sure 90 percent of the advice he got
was, "You can't give that for this, this, and this reason."
As I look back on it, the things that were done did
not weaken the presidency one damn bit. It in fact loosened
up the president's time. If he had done many of these things
of his own volition, if it hadn't been dragged, he would
have had a group of chancellors, I repeat, that would have
thrown themselves on the railroad tracks. Instead, he had
a group of chancellors, part of whom were disappointed in
him in the end and part of whom were absolutely bitter at
his underlings. And to that extent, they were really
getting at him .
Well, it's just too damn bad, because many of that
man's qualities--his mind is absolutely first-rate, and his
technique of negotiation, if properly applied, is really
just the right thing. Whatever these qualities were and
whatever the forces were that made him blind to the neces-
sity of streamlining and modernizing the statewide univer-
sity — I'm sure some were personal and some were pressures
on him of the type I've described — it's one of the great
tragedies of my memory; because in the end his illogic in
many of these things, his technique of trying to prevent
them, backfired and boomeranged. That leads to an episode
about a year before he left. It was a meeting at San
MINK: A regents' meeting?
MURPHY: Yes. It was before the troubles in Berkeley were
over, but they'd been under way for quite a while. Strong
had been fired and was bitter beyond expression. Clark
had not defended Strong. Clark had tried to explain Strong
and his position. Strong's position and Clark's position
on how to maintain control of the Berkeley campus were dia-
metrically opposed. Strong wanted to take the tough position;
Kerr wanted to negotiate. And here again was this terrible
problem of having the president acting de facto as chancellor
of Berkeley, Right at the critical time when Strong wanted
to lay on certain activities, Kerr intervened, and moved
in, and took over the responsibility of settling the prob-
lem from Strong. Now, as you know, his efforts to settle
were failure. In fact, they led to more riotous behavior,
which continued to humiliate the regents, anger them and
frustrate them. But Strong was the chancellor. Here he
was with the responsibility and none of the authority,
which had been taken away from him by Kerr and some of
Kerr's underlings who were supposed to run this, negotiate
this. Then, when it failed, and these riotous things got
even worse, where did the criticism go? It went to Strong.
And the criticism was, "This weak man; we should have known;
he never had administrative experience; and we should have
known when we put him in that he was not up to the test."
And Ed was hearing things.
There was a regents' meeting at Davis one time. We
had this dinner before, and after dinner the regents wanted
to talk to Strong about this. This was about two months
before he was fired. They were really very upset, and they
didn't want to do it publicly at a regents' meeting or even
in closed session. They didn't want the press to know
about this. They did it at this dinner the night before,
and all we chancellors were there. Ed Strong got up, and
the regents really started to go at him. "Why did you
permit this? Why do you do that?" The questions were
not just tough questions; they were asked with rancor and
bitterness. And Ed was defending himself. And finally
he said, "Look, you people don't understand something."
He said, "I didn't have any authority to do this thing."
He said, "When I was about ready to move, here's what I'd
planned to do," and he listed them.
MINK: Was Kerr there?
MURPHY: Yes. He said, "Your president moved in and told
me that I no longer would deal with this problem. " He
said, "I haven't had any authority or responsibility for
the past" — whatever it was, three weeks, four weeks, five
weeks — "Clark Kerr has been doing it. Now, if these things
are wrong, ask the president what went wrong." The heads
turned. Kerr got angry, and he said, "Chancellor Strong,
that's not true at all. You're chancellor at Berkeley.
It's your responsibility and still your responsibility."
He said, "I've been giving advice." And boy, they really
got into it. Ed said, "That isn't true. You're lying, Mr.
President. You sent so-and-so to do this, and you told so-
and-so to do that, and you countermanded my orders or so-and-
so that you sent countermanded my instructions to so-and-so."
MINK: He read it chapter, line and verse.
MURPHY: Yeah, chapter and verse. And he was red; Clark
was red. Well, finally the chairman, whoever it was at
that time, simply said, "Okay, I think this meeting has gone
to the point of no return, negative returns, and we'll quit."
Well, it was perfectly clear at that moment that one or the
other had to go. You can't have a chancellor publicly tel-
ling the president he's a liar, or implying it and saying
it, and the president denying responsibility. It just isn't
going to work. And it was my view, of course, that Ed
would go. I talked to Ed afterwards, and he was shaken.
He was absolutely shaken. He didn't believe that Clark
would ever understand. He had blind, naive faith. In
subsequent times he said, "You know, if I'd only listened
to you" — this sort of thing.
MINK: He had never joined the club.
MURPHY: Oh, absolutely not. This was the terrible thing
about it. He was one of Clark's most faithful servants
in these chancellors' meetings. And more than once he tried
to knock me down, in views that I would bring up, in support
of the president. And then to all of a sudden find himself
just dropped as a sacrificial goat was, needless to say,
bitter gall to him. Well, needless to say, he was out in
a week or two, and Martin Meyerson came in. He was an
interim chancellor, remember?
MINK: Before Heyns . Yes, that's right.
MURPHY: Martin Meyerson. Martin was a close friend of
Clark's, had known him a long time. Clark admired him.
Martin was a very capable fellow. One of the first things
Martin did was to come and ask me about this whole thing.
I tried to explain it to him. I said, "Martin, now, you
are going to be chewed up unless you've got a very clear
iinderstanding of your authority and responsibility here.
It destroyed Ed." Well, as you know, Martin did what he
could. The statewide administration would be in it one
minute and out the next minute, and Martin finally quit
and went off to Buffalo. But let me get back to this.
So these things had been developing all along, and
as I say, the regents were deeply distraught about this
Berkeley thing. Now, in the meantime, the thing that infur-
iated the statewide administration was when I was present —
it was embarrassing even to me — at these meetings. You know,
for a year, the business of the university at regents'
meetings practically was nonexistent. All it was involved
with was the Berkeley riots. And during this you could just
see it grow and grow and grow. The bitter, bitter gall was,
repeatedly they would say, "Well, why can't you handle it
the way it's being done at UCLA?" And repeatedly I'd be
asked, "Chancellor Murphy, would you please tell us what
you're doing down there they aren't doing at Berkeley?"
MINK: Maybe you'd like to tell us now what you were doing
that they weren't doing.
MURPHY: Well, in all fairness — let me come to that in a
moment — I think the record of the regents' minutes are
there. I never once said, "Well, if you'd only do it our
way, you wouldn't have the problem." I repeatedly said
to the regents, "Look. You're talking about apples and
oranges." And then I would describe the difference. UCLA's
located in Westwood and Bel-Air; the campus environment is
totally different. We don't have the magnet in Southern
California that the Bay Area seems to be for the drug kids
and the runaways and the great unwashed who moved over
from--what do they call that beach?
MINK: North Beach.
MURPHY: North Beach to Berkeley. We have a very different
situation here in terms of kinds of students.
TAPE NUMBER: III, Side 2
OCTOBER 19, 1973
MURPHY: In other words, I would make the point that the
environment was totally different and that, therefore,
keeping things under control was [easier]. We didn't have
the nonstudent problem to the extent that Berkeley did.
And it was always my conviction that if they hadn't had that
nonstudent crowd hanging around the periphery of the campus,
sure, they'd have had a few minor riots and this and that,
but they'd never have been able to get the massive number of
troops. So I just would repeat that. And I don't think I
ever gave the feeling that — in fact, I think I said on more
than one occasion, "You know, if I were at Berkeley, I don't
think I'd be doing much better, because I think you've got
an impossible problem, really."
MINK: Well, one thing intrigues me, and I often have said
to other people at Berkeley: was it ever seriously suggested
that they might simply put a cordon around that campus and
make every student that went in and out show his reg card?
Because really, it was this hanger-on group; you know, you
never knew where they were. They were right in there.
MURPHY: Charged up with drugs and irrational and so on.
Well, I would say this more than once, while I'm afraid
half the regents were saying — privately to themselves, of
course--"Isn' t he a modest man?" I really meant what I
was saying. In fact, I know some of them would say, "Come
on, Franklin, now really level. What is the secret?"
I'd say, "I'm telling you that if I were at Berkeley, I'm
not sure that things would be a lot better. Maybe they
wouldn't have started in the first place, but who knows?"
But the thing, I'm sure, that became an absolutely intolerable
echo in Clark's ear was this stuff, "Well, why don't you do
it like UCLA?" And I must say, had I been in his position,
I would have been very bitter, too.
MINK: It was ironic, though, that when it finally did come
down to the point that the regents got too scared to be on
any campus, it was at UCLA that they got scared — over at
the Faculty Center with the windows.
MURPHY: Yes, I remember.
MINK: You were there then?
MURPHY: No, no.
MINK: You had left already. That was Chuck's, then.
That's right; I guess so.
MURPHY: So this thing kept building. It was building on
the base of a man that had been a little too clever for him-
self, anyway. You know, cleverness is a great thing, just
like rationalization's a great thing, if properly used.
But if [it's] misused, then you run the risk of being dis-
covered or caught. And some of these things, like the Charter
Day episode and other things that I won't even bother
mentioning, an accumulation of little things had eroded.
And then the Ed Strong thing. T^d I might add that
there were a lot of people on the regents that liked Ed
Strong: Catherine Hearst, I remember; Phil Boyd, a regent
from Oakland, an awfully nice man, a lawyer who subsequently
left the board — they were very fond of Ed. And after this
terrible episode at Davis, I haven't the slightest doubt
that a number of these regents called him. I don't know
this for a fact, but I would just naturally assume it,
because they liked him, they were close to him. And I
haven't the slightest doubt that Ed levelled, that Ed was
a very bitter man.
Now, about that time--I forget the exact dates, but
it was in that time frame--Kerr forced out John Saunders,
who had been one of his most faithful servants in the
vineyard. And John's bitterness knew no bounds. It still
MINK: What were, in a nutshell, the differences that arose
MURPHY: Well, I really never knew. Part of it was, maybe,
John's fault, but down in the faculty there were some divi-
sions. There were members of the faculty who felt that
John was not getting enough for them. I'm afraid John paid
the price of our getting a lot for UCLA medical school.
Remember, we doubled the size of the hospital and so on
and got really up to par with San Francisco. They had a
lot of demands, and ours came first. And I think they
felt he had not been powerful and strong enough, and they
saw the UCLA medical school growing by leaps and bounds
in quality and reputation and size. I think this led to
some of the problems. John did have a little degree of
arrogance about him which, I suspect, had irritated some
of his faculty. He was a Scotsman, you know, and he talked
sort of down to people occasionally.
MINK: I remember he was the only chancellor who ever also
acted as librarian on his campus.
MURPHY: Yes. You know, John and I got along fine except
I didn't like the way he was totally nonsupportive of me
at the chancellors' meetings. He was fired. He had some
friends, because that faculty at San Francisco medical
school was divided, and a lot of them were very fond of
John. And I haven't the slightest doubt that John person-
ally, with his close friends on the regents plus members of
that faculty, got to some of the regents about Kerr.
So his power base — or the credibility, I guess you'd
say, he had with the regents — was being eroded little by
little all the time, and then it was enormously stimulated
by this whole Berkeley riotous behavior. The regents were
just beside themselves. It was a humiliation to them; it
was all over the country. Berkeley was the prototype,
and they were hearing from their friends in California.
And Kerr seemed unable to do anything about it. And I
must say that things were going pretty well on their other
big campus. I don't think they really accepted my explan-
ation that the two were very different and they shouldn't
Finally, this thing all came to a head. Some of the
regents had really totally lost confidence in Kerr, and
they wanted to get rid of him. They wanted to fire him.
This was before Reagan. And there was this meeting at
San Francisco — I stayed at the Clift Hotel whenever they
had meetings--and I remember that the regents were having
a dinner that night in private. And the thing that really
surprised me, as I recall it, was that it was so private
that it was regents only, excluding the president. I
remember I heard from somebody, and I can't recall why.
Oh, I remember why: because we had a chancellors' meeting,
and Clark was there. So I went back to the Clift Hotel
after dinner, and I was sitting in the bar having a night-
cap when two regents came in, Mrs. Chandler and one other.
I said, "Come on over. Join us and have a nightcap."
Mrs. Chandler said something to the effect, "My God, that
was an exhausting session," and I innocently said, "What's
the problem?" And she said, "Well, there's a movement afoot
to tomorrow fire Clark Kerr." Well, I gasped, and I said,
"Gee, I hope that isn't serious." She said, "Absolutely.
And it's touch and go. There are a group that absolutely
are determined that he should go, and go now; there are a
small group that are absolutely determined he stay; and
then there's a large group of us in the center, some of
whom move in the direction of firing him and others who
say, "Let's hang on a while longer!" And Mrs. Chandler
said, "What do you think about it?" And I said, "Look,
you've got to prevent this from happening. First of all,
firing Clark Kerr is not going to solve the Berkeley prob-
lem. It can only pour flames on the fire. You'll really
be in for some trouble. And secondly, who's going to succeed
him? Who wants to take that job under these circumstances,
especially if Kerr, who is highly respected around the
country as an educator, is fired under these circumstances?"
I said, "Really, all of you regents have got to pull back
from the tree and look at the forest. All of the signs are
that this is not the time to upset the applecart." I spoke
with passion, and she said, "You really feel this strongly";
and I said, "Look, I do." And I said, "Furthermore, it'll
not just create problems with Berkeley and pour flames on
the fire; it may create a big fire for me for a while. And
I'm not anxious to have a fire."
And I remember the other person — I forget who it was —
said, "Well, we thought you would think this was a good
idea." I said, "Why?" "Well, because of your differences
with Kerr." (By this time, it had become famous within
the regents.) I said, "You know, nobody understands my
differences with Kerr. I don't dislike Clark Kerr. He's
not ray best friend, but he's not my enemy. I want to see
him succeed. You must understand that my differences are
not with Clark Kerr; my differences are really, in a sense,
with the regents, who haven't had the wisdom and understanding
to change the system of administration of this university
to make it workable." So we talked about that for a while
longer, and then I said, "Well, I hope I've convinced you
that you should vote against his firing. As a matter of
fact," I said, "I hope I've convinced you that you don't
even bring this issue up, because if you do, it's bound to
leak out. Just convince the negatives that if they do
bring it up, they're going to be beaten anyway, and there's
no purpose in doing it." And she said yes, and the other
person said yes. I said, "Now, tell me, who might be influ-
ential in this?" Mrs. Chandler said Norton Simon might be.
I said, "Where is he staying?" Well, nobody knew, so I
called up Marge Woolman, and I finally discovered he was
staying at the St. Francis. I woke him up at midnight and
said, "Look, I've got to see you before the regents' meeting."
So we arranged to meet for breakfast. In fact, I told
him I'd drive him out. (I had a rented car.) So I really
gave it to him, too — in those days, we were great friends--
and on the same grounds. But he kept saying, "But we can't
trust him." And I said, "Look, There are a lot of people
in the world who have techniques of administration, and you
have to understand them. It isn't a question of trust;
it's a question of understanding." But I said, "Be that
as it may, you cannot put personal feelings into this matter.
This is a very sensitive issue, and it's like you throw a
stick of dynamite into the whole statewide university prob-
Well, then he asked me to talk to Phil Boyd. I grabbed
Phil Boyd prior to the meeting — in fact, the meeting started
without Phil — and I convinced Phil. Phil is a bit of a
conservative, and he was just livid about the inability of
Clark to stop this nonsense. And he was one who always
thought that I was being modest when I said it was a dif-
ferent thing. So I don't know what would have happened in
any event. All I know is that these three people, and
others, pleaded with the regents not even to raise this,
and it wasn't raised. So we got over that hurdle.
I went home from that meeting really shaken, because
I knew that there was some friction between Clark and the
regents; but I had no feeling that it was so deep, that
there was the slightest possibility of his being removed
from office. So I decided that this was one I could not
tell Clark. If he and I had had a relationship, he was
the first one I'd have gone to, but I'm sure he would have
been bitter about the fact that I had enough influence to —
you know. Because at that point I had more influence than
he did, and that's a humiliating thing for a proud man to
have to realize.
So I went to Harry Wellman. I had my differences with
Harry, I must say, early on. But I came, in the end, to
have the most enormous respect for Harry Wellman. He was
loyal to Clark, and he did do Clark's bidding, but at the
same time Harry intuitively understood my problem. And as
this thing evolved, toward the end Harry really was helpful
in getting some of these administrative modifications. So,
starting from that bitter moment when he gave me hell in
the Bel-Air Hotel, where the relationship was below zero,
it wound up like 150 percent. And I was the one who insis-
ted that he get his honorary degree at UCLA when he retired.
I went to Harry Wellman, and I said, "Harry, I'm going to
tell you a story you won't believe; but I think the record's
clear, I've always told you the truth. You'll understand
why I can't tell Clark. You know what our relationship is,
and you'll understand how it would make it even worse."
Then I told him this whole story. He, needless to say,
was shocked, too. And he, at first, couldn't believe it.
and I said, "Harry, it is a fact, you have my word of
honor. It is that close now."
MINK: When was this? Right after the meeting?
MURPHY: I think I got him before I went home to Los
Angeles. And he said, "What '11 we do?" And I said, "Well,
first of all, I think you've got to tell Clark to get the
hell out of the Berkeley thing. He's got to stop being
chancellor at Berkeley, both for his own good and for the
good of the university. He shouldn't have ever tried to
be that, de facto, anyway. But now his whole career's at
stake. And you've got to get Clark going all out, all out
to get a new, fresh, strong face, if possible, from outside
the university to come in and be the Berkeley chancellor and
run Berkeley. Now, let him take the full responsibility;
if the campus burns up, well, it's his. But Kerr here is
in and out, in and out, in a difficult situation, and he's
getting the blame." "Well," he says, "you know, we're
looking." I said, "The hell you are. You're just not
looking hard enough. Because I think that Clark has from
the very beginning wanted to be both chancellor and president.
And you know that, Harry, in your heart. This is the Sproul
image . "
MINK: But the thing is. Dr. Murphy, at this point, who
could they have gotten at Berkeley?
MURPHY: Well, now, wait a minute. I'm a year ahead. I
think it must have been two years. Let me go on. It had
to be two years when this thing happened in San Francisco.
Shortly thereafter, the search for the Berkeley chancellor
really got going, and I finally got a call from Harry
Wellman. The regents' meeting that particular month coming
up was at Berkeley. Things had sort of quieted down, but
you know, it was still reasonably riotous. And he said,
"We've got a man out here who's coming out to meet with the
regents, and he is absolutely the man, Franklin, if we can
get him. And he says he wants to talk to you above every-
body else. His name is Roger Heyns . He's vice-president
of the University of Michigan. He's just the thing the
doctor ordered — experienced, low-key, quiet but tough and
firm, and a really adult, mature person." I said, "Well,
why does he want to talk to me? I don't know him." "Well,
that's all I can report, that that's what he said in advance,
Would you be willing to meet him?" I said, "Harry, if you
want, I'll go anywhere, because we've got to quiet this
Berkeley thing down. It's hurting the whole university,
including UCLA, in the legislature. Right now my number-one
target in priority is not more money for UCLA, but a damned
good chancellor at Berkeley — because there won't be any
money to divide up. I'll go anywhere, do anything." And
so it was arranged that I was to meet with Roger at break-
fast Wednesday morning. I was to come up early — have lunch
with him; that was it. Then he was to meet with the
chancellors Wednesday night; then he was to meet with
the regents Thursday morning at breakfast, etc., etc.
So I promptly got on the phone and started calling
my friends around the country about Roger Heyns . I'd
never met him; I didn't even know the name. And I managed
to get hold of some people, some of my Big Ten president
friends — Meredith Wilson and people like that--who had
worked with Roger and knew him; and all the word that came
back was 150 percent positive. "If you can get him, God,
you're terribly lucky." Then I said, "Well, why in the
world would Roger want to come and take this job?" Remem-
ber, at that time Berkeley was in every newspaper. Well,
as it turned out — it sounded Pollyannish, but as it turned
out it was really true — one of the reasons was he was intri-
gued by this challenge. He couldn't believe that a dis-
tinguished university such as Berkeley could get into this
kind of a mess. He ' s a trained psychologist; that's his
PhD. It absolutely intrigued him in terms of the possi-
bility of solving this problem. That was only one. Another
one was, it seemed clear — and my Big Ten friends told me
this — that for a lot of reasons, internal political reasons
at the university, that he was not going to be the successor
to Harlan Hatcher, who I think was going to retire that
year as president. That was a good time for him to move.
And finally, as I subsequently learned, his wife wanted
to leave Ann Arbor for personal reasons.
Armed with this telephoned information, I decided to
do the recruitment effort of my life, and I decided to do
it this way. I decided to tell Roger all the bad things,
tell him how really bad they were administratively when I
came but how successful I'd been, really working with the
regents in solving these problems — how successful I thought
I'd been. Then I decided to talk to him about the great
opportunity. Berkeley couldn't go any lower; he had to
go out a hero because nobody could do worse. And finally
I decided to advise him as to some of the conditions.
MINK: That he'd have to make in accepting the job.
MURPHY: Yes, right. So that's the way it went. I told
him of the dark old days down here and how things had changed.
Of course, he'd gotten all this word that I'd gotten earlier:
that you have no authority and the faculty runs the show
and so forth. I told him how that really wasn't true, how
you could work with the faculty and how you could develop
a very successful technique. I told him how marvelous the
regents were, which in my view was true; and I told him the
problems I had had with Kerr, quite frankly, and the prob-
lems I had getting the other chancellors to come along.
But I said, "Look, Roger, Emil's beginning to come along
and some of the others. McHenry never will, but we've got
a few fellows up there, and with you in there we can
just move this thing." And I told him what the targets
were: the chancellors' authority for appointment and
promotion, much more budgetary f lexibility--how close
we were to that, so forth and so on. And with him, we'd
be over the hump.
MINK: What did you suggest were the conditions?
MURPHY: I'm getting to that. I said, "Roger, let me
just say that you're really down to one problem. But,"
I said, "the reason it isn't insoluble is the regents now
understand, because they didn't six or seven years ago.
The number-one problem is that there hasn't been a chan-
cellor, there hasn't been anyone running the Berkeley
campus, since Bob Sproul — who was de facto president of
the Berkeley campus. But in this evolution, Kerr, when
he was chancellor for a year or two, had damned little
authority, none at all. Sproul wouldn't give it to him.
And Kerr has not given it to anybody. I fear he's wanted
sycophants." I said, "The symbolism is that empty house.
And I think that unless you take a commitment (it's sym-
bolic) that the chancellor must live in--and rename it
not the president's house, the chancellor's house; the
University House is the way they compromised — live in
the University House on the campus, don't take the job.
Furthermore, say that you not only want the commitment
that you will live in that University House, which has been
empty, used only for social stuff, since the Sprouls left
it — believe it or not, it was empty all those years--but
that you want an adequate budget to fix it up, because I
can tell you by having been up there at the social events
and so on, it is a disaster. It needs a new kitchen; it
needs a new this; it needs new furniture and so on."
"Well, how much is that going to cost?" I said, "You'd
better say that you need at least $100,000." "That's a
lot of money," he said. "You could build a house for that."
I said, "Not a house that big. But you've got to spend
that. But even if you could build a house, even if they'd
give you a half a million to build a house, you say, 'No,
it's that house.' Because that's the house that Bob Sproul
lived in, and that's going to say something to this campus.
"Secondly," I said, "you say that you want an adequate
budget for entertainment and to do the kinds of things in
that house that ought to be done.
"Thirdly, you say that you want the regents to care-
fully look into and consider the role of the chancellor
in molding the faculty, and when they ask you to define
that you will say the role and responsibility of the chan-
cellor, the authority of the chancellor, in the promotion
and appointment process.
"Finally," I said, "you tell them that you want an
office on campus that is adequate to the responsibilities
of the head of one of the largest and most prestigious
university campuses in America." "Well, why do I say that?"
"You should have seen the office that was available to
Strong and Glenn Seaborg. It was a cubbyhole, an absolute
cubbyhole. Across the street they built this new statewide
building, and, my God, you could play handball in some of
those offices. But the Berkeley chancellor had a little
rabbit warren. You say that you want them to put in the
building plans for the Berkeley campus to move that other
stuff out and give the chancellor's suite a great deal more.
You say that after you look at it. But you'll have that
reaction. Demand to look at it." But I said, "Look,
you're going to get all these things from the regents.
You just ask for them and you're going to get them.
They're desperate. You're in a leverage position." (At
this point we'd become very friendly. Roger and I hit it
off the minute we met.) I said, "Furthermore, let me play
a role in the scenario. I'm going to go back to Wellman
and to Kerr and to the regents, and I'm going to say,
'My God, I've never seen such a man. He's made for the
job. And I don't think there's any way you can get him.
He's not accustomed to this kind of administrative structure,
Maybe if you offered him the house; I don't know. You
think he's going to move into an office like that? I don't
think you've got a ghost of a chance to get him. '" So
that's the way it went.
We had lunch, and then we met with the chancellors.
And very innocently we talked about some business--the
chancellors and the president; Harry Wellman was always
there — very innocently. And Clark said, "Well, Roger,
you've seen how we operate here. Have you got any thoughts
for the good of the cause?" Roger said, "Well...." He
sort of made a general opening statement; he said, "I'm
a little puzzled as to how this all operates. I heard
Franklin here raise questions about promotions and appoint-
ments and whether or not some of these could be delegated.
What's that all about?" Well, there was an attempt made
to explain this to Roger, and he said, "Gee, I don't under-
stand that. I must say, that puzzles me." Well, this con-
versation went on.
Then he met with the regents. Roger's much lower-
key than I am. He's a real soft kind of a person, but
steel underneath. Well, needless to say, he made these
conditions, laid them down mildly. Every single one was
granted. And he came. What's his wife's name, that lovely
MRS. MURPHY: Esther.
MURPHY: Esther. They arrived. You know, when I got here,
at least there was Hansena Frederickson, who had some back-
ground in where all of the things were, you know. He
arrived and there was no such person around.
MINK: What about Agnes Robb? She was still in there
sort of as secretary to Sproul.
MURPHY: Yes, precisely. She was doing Sproul ' s work and
so on, and really, she was Sproul ' s secretary. No, there
was nobody there like Hansena. Sproul hadn't been around
all these years.
MINK: That's right. But she knew where the bodies were
MURPHY: Well, sure she knew that, but you know, all these
things that happened in the interim, she didn't know any-
thing about. So Roger called me up, and he said, "God,
I haven't got anybody up here to give me advice on little
things. I'm getting busy on trying to find the vice-
chancellor and this and this and this--I know how to do
that — but," he said, "Esther and I don't know anything
about whether there's an entertainment budget, where is
it, how do you use it, vouchers — you know, all these
things." I said, "Roger, don't talk to anybody up there
about that. Don't talk to them at all. When is the earliest
time that you and Esther can get on the plane and come
down here and spend a day with Judy and me — we'll have
dinner and all that — and Hansena Frederickson? Because
I'm going to give Hansena to you. She's dealt with this
statewide crowd for all these years; she's seen the
struggles I've gone through." We had built up a system
and it was working perfectly. So--remember , Judy?--
they came down. I had briefed Hansena and, I think.
Chuck and maybe Art Eddy as to how we'd managed all these
logistical things; and I had them type it out, as a matter
of fact, I think, and they took notes. I think we had
dinner together or something, and they went back. Well,
that got them going.
I also suggested they get in touch with certain
regents in San Francisco to pick out a decorator, because
I just didn't want them talking to that statewide group--
because I knew that there was deep resentment that Roger
was moving into that house; I knew that there was deep
resentment that Roger felt he had to have a bigger office
suite, and they they would figure out all ways and means
to slow this down. Now, maybe I was being unfair to those
people. But after all, I have to deal with the track
record. And I didn't believe that leopards change their
spots that quickly.
Well, I'm happy to say that — you know, Roger was smart
and so on — they got the thing going; the house was remodeled,
I think very nicely, considering the size and character of
the house, a very wonderful kitchen and new furniture and
all. The regents got a special item in the budget that was
already gone in to remodel, move things over, and so forth
and so on.
Well, from the moment Roger arrived, the big push
was under way to finally get the authority and responsi-
bility to the chancellors. I now had, as part of this
effort, a gifted, strong, experienced man who was not
brainwashed by the University of California system, had
not grown up in it, as I had been. And we had, Roger
and I, we now had Emil coming along, we had Dan Aldrich
at this point trying to build this new campus and infur-
iated with these second- level bureaucrats. We really,
in the end, had everybody--except McHenry, who I think to
the very bitter end said, "Yes, sir; no, sir," to whatever
Clark wanted. And the question went on; I'll just say it
did, without going through all the exercises.
Oh, I must say in all fairness, I said, "Roger,
there's one thing that maybe we won't agree upon. But I
hope we can." I said, "One thing that is outstanding
here is equity between Berkeley and Los Angeles." I said,
"I don't want it at the expense of Berkeley. I never have.
I want Berkeley to have precisely what Berkeley thinks it
needs. But I think given the mandate of the regents and
so on, Los Angeles ought to have precisely what it needs,
and it needs about what Berkeley needs." He said, "I have
no trouble with that, no argument. Let's work together
to get more for both. " So even on the library--over and
over again we'd get the commitment and then they'd pull
the rug out, and we'd have to go back--Roger was always
So Roger and I were on the phone together a couple
of times a week, and we really set the campaign. The
first target was to get the budget flexibility, and we
got it--transfer between budget items and so on and so
forth, without checking with the Berkeley bureaucrats.
Now, maybe it isn't totally satisfactory — I guess you'd
have to talk to Chuck about that — but it's so much different
than it was when we started out that you wouldn't recognize
the two systems .
The second thing we got that we decided that we really
had to break the back of was the appointment and promotion
thing. And here Kerr really shone at his Machiavellian
best. I think in retrospect this was another nail in the
coffin. And I take no satisfaction in telling you this.
These are facts. We started on this at the chancellors'
meetings, and by this time Kerr realized that it just
wasn't Murphy, but it was Murphy and Heyns and Mrak and
[Ivan] Hinderaker and all of us.
MINK: Did Ivan come in earlier, or was he one of the last
to come in?
MURPHY: He was sort of toward the end.
MINK: He was a UCLA grad.
MURPHY: Yes. Ivan was never a sycophant to Clark. I
just would say that Ivan was a little slower getting into
the fray. The leadership in the thing in the beginning,
in this last push, was Heyns and Mrak and Murphy. The
others came in as the momentum grew.
Well, on this promotion and appointment thing, it
was fascinating. Our theory was that the senate process
was a problem, but we had to tell the senate committees
they were advisory. That's what the rules read. They had
developed a common-law practice of thinking this was
final, and it wasn't. We worked with them and so on.
And each campus would have the right to fashion its own
senate mechanism. Just because Berkeley said the dean
couldn't sit in at the ad hoc committee, Los Angeles might
have it, and that this could be local option. We wanted
that, number one.
Number two, when the decisions were made within the
budget reports, they would go the the chancellor; the
chancellor would approve or reject as the case may be.
But there was no appeal to his rejection, around him to
Kerr. And if it were positive all the way through, the
president would simply deliver to the regents the chancellor's
recommendations without comment. This was our proposal.
In the case of administrative officers — dean, that is;
vice-chancellors — the president would play a role. It
would be a recommendation to the president, a rejection
or acceptance, and the president would then say, "These
are my recommendations."
Well, we tugged and squirmed and fought and so forth,
and Clark suddenly realized that he had the entire group
of chancellors, except for McHenry , for this; and by this
time, he was an embattled man. And he knew that his standing
with the regents was insecure. Whether Wellman ever reported
that thing to him or not, I don't know; but I suspect
Harry did indirectly, leaving my name out of it. So he
decided to pull a typical Kerr thing. I guess it was
after several of these meetings. He finally said, "Look.
The recommendation must go directly from the chancellor
to the regents, because the president can't merely forward.
The act of forwarding implies approval. And this means
that you're asking the president to imply that he's approved
something that he might, in fact, disapprove. The only
thing that possibly could be presented for discussion of
the regents is a direct approach."
Well, he assumed that the regents would not tolerate
that, and that it would have to be presented to the president
for mechanical and other reasons, and that therefore the
regents would say, "Well, there's a problem here, but take
it back and study it further." It was a delaying tactic.
He was so confident that this is what would happen that
he presented it. To his amazement, and certainly to mine,
the regents debated this back and forth and back and forth
and finally moved--I was at the meeting--that even the
regents didn't have to deal with it. The chancellors
could make the final decision and write the letter and say,
"You're appointed." Well, by God, we walked out of that
meeting with more than we'd thought we'd have.
Now, I think Clark was absolutely stunned, and I
must say I was stunned. But again, Clark should have
realized there was some symbolism here for him personally,
which I realized later. In effect, the regents were saying,
"Well, you know, the president's rather irrelevant in this
process. The chancellor's the one we must rely on. We're
relying on Roger Heyns at Berkeley; we're relying on Roger
to solve that problem. We're relying on Franklin to keep
the UCLA campus quiet. They've done a good job. They need
this. And they need this strength because of the Berkeley
riots. And people don't realize this, and I think Clark to
this day doesn't realize the fact that what the Berkeley
riots did was subconsciously prove to the regents that the
one thing they needed was a strong chancellor forever.
And the president could be just a bureaucrat. So at that
point, the regents subconsciously were seeking at every
turn to strengthen the office of the chancellorship. They
didn't even know they were doing that, but that's really
what they were doing, and that's one of the lessons of
these Berkeley riots.
Well, we got this through in an unbelievable fashion.
This was in the last year of Clark's tenure. So we were
really beginning now to get what we wanted, and even the
statewide administration bureaucrats were beginning to
listen to us.
MINK: This would have been '68.
MURPHY: Yes, '68 or '67.
MINK: Sixty-seven, yes.
MURPHY: Even the statewide bureaucrats were getting the
image here that the chancellors were strong people in this
system and that they were having more influence on issues
than the president. So I suddenly discovered dulcet tones,
you know. You know: "How are things going, Franklin?"
and "Anything we can do?" You know, this sort of thing.
Well, Clark, at that point, I think something was happening
to him. I've never known, really. Because in the summer
of that year, I got a phone call from Harry Wellman, who
said he wanted to come down and talk to me. He came. He
said, "I want to talk to you about Clark. We haven't
talked about Clark since you related to me this thing in
San Francisco." But he said, "You know the regents well,
and you know the climate well, and you know Southern
California well. You think Clark's in real trouble?"
And I said, "Harry, he's in very real trouble, maybe not
of his own making entirely. He bears the burden of the
Berkeley thing, because he insisted on getting in the
middle of it. Reagan is running for office; one of his
campaign planks is that he's going to clean up Berkeley
and stop this riotous behavior. And I must tell you
frankly that Clark's credibility with the regents has
been substantially eroded. And you know the reasons,
He said, "Yes, I'm afraid I do." He said, "What
should and can Clark do?" "Well," I said, "I don't know.
I think one thing has already been done. The responsibility
for the Berkeley problem is now with Roger, and I urge you
to keep Clark out of it if there's another big flare."
I said, "I think he really ought to be more understanding
as to what we chancellors have been trying to do . I think
there's some tension between him and the chancellors that
could be relieved if he'd be a little more outgoing. Maybe
it's too late for that; I don't know. It isn't too late
for that." And I said, "Above everything else, he's got
to stay out of this political campaign, directly or indirectly,
because," I said, "it's my instinct that Reagan's going to
win, and it may be hard on the university. But at the same
time, I think we ought to try and woo Reagan rather than
fight him." He said, "Oh."
Now, the facts are, as you know, Clark was in the
campaign--not out making speeches, but word got out that
Clark Kerr said Reagan's election would be a disaster.
Maybe Pat Brown put the bead on him, I don't know. Well,
you know, this was just awful. Then the next thing that
happened was that Reagan was elected.
TAPE NUMBER: IV, Side 1
NOVEMBER 15, 1973
MURPHY: I think, just to complete the sad — and, to me,
in many ways tragic — episode of the Clark Kerr continuing,
growing problem with the regents, we can move on now to
the period between the meeting in San Francisco that I
previously described and the final meeting which was in
Berkeley, I think, in January, perhaps. As I indicated
earlier, many of the regents, by this time, had talked to
me. They were worried. I think the ones that talked to
me knew perfectly well that I was really not bucking for
the presidency and didn't want it, and I explained credibly
why I didn't. So I guess they felt I was a sort of neutral
resource. And there was great concern because of the
difficulties in Berkeley, the student riots; and the prob-
lems in San Francisco at the Medical Center, the dismissal
of John Saunders — and his bitterness, which then fed back
into the regents, his friends on the regents. Clark Kerr's
credibility with the regents had clearly been eroded, even,
I think I might add, unfairly. But at the same time Clark,
I think, wasn't sensitive enough to this. I think he never
dreamed that this questioning had developed in the minds
of many regents, even friends of his.
Then Reagan was elected, and he had made, as you will
recall, as a major point of his campaign that he'd bring
order to Berkeley. Rightly or wrongly, and I don't know
the answer to this, friends of Reagan had told me that
they had evidence that Clark was working on behalf of Pat
Brown, and telling people that they had to vote for Brown
and that the university would be in deep trouble if they
didn't; and of course, that didn't fall happily on the ears
of the governor, the subsequent Governor Reagan. So I was
really convinced that with the knowledge that he was in a
position to appoint certain ex officio trustees, and with
the growing erosion of credibility, that Clark was in very
Finally, one day I had a call from Harry Wellman, who
was very loyal to Clark, a real wonderful soldier. Harry
and I had our differences, but I came to love him very,
very much and I have great respect for him. He came down
and said he wanted to talk to me, and we had a talk. He
asked me what I thought the situation was — this was in
about October--concerning Clark. And I told him very frankly,
and I told him I hoped he would tell Clark that I thought
Clark was in deep trouble, and especially was this going to
be true if Reagan would be elected — and by that time, the
polls indicated Reagan was going to be elected. I remember
Harry saying, "But Reagan doesn't have the votes." And I
said, "Well, that's not the point, Harry. He has a lot of
potential votes on this issue that he wouldn't have on
others. A lot of Clark's friends and people who have in
time respected him are now beginning to say that maybe
he isn't the right man for this job at this time." Well,
then Harry and I talked about it. He got the point, that
I was very honest about it, as best I knew how to be, and
He went back, and I'm fairly certain he told Clark
what I told him. I don't know Clark's reaction, except
I knew that an incredible thing happened. We were preparing
the budget. Reagan had now been elected; the university
budget was in process of preparation. And right at the
time that Clark should have been working in Sacramento
and talking to Reagan and talking to the new director of
finance and working toward the processing of this budget,
he went off to Hong Kong. And he was out of the country
for about three or four rather critical weeks when many of
the regents felt he should be working to develop a rapproche-
ment with the governor and the new administration. And this
really infuriated some of the regents who had been supporters
of his. They thought it was irresponsible. Why Clark did
it, I don't know. I guess it was he wasn't sensitive to the
seriousness of the problem. Furthermore, by this time this
had been interpreted by the new Department of Finance — and
then, therefore, Reagan--as a kind of a snub, because other
people, second-level people, had to go up there and talk
about the budget; and in fact, a committee of the regents,
I recall, finally went up along with Harry Wellman and so
So all these things were building up now to a crescendo.
And there came the meeting in January at Berkeley. I'll
never forget that one, because I went up to the regents'
meeting and the chancellors' meeting the night before with
a bad cold, and flying up something happened. And by the
time the next morning came around, I had a very severe ear-
ache, a temperature of about 102, and felt absolutely awful.
Well, the first inkling that something was up was when,
the night of the chancellors' meeting, the chairman of the
Board of Regents called a meeting of regents only, without
the president. You see, the president is ex officio a
regent. Well, this was really quite unusual. And Clark, I
remember, came and had dinner with the chancellors, and you
could tell he was a little upset about this and very, very
concerned. In fact, he came around to me and said, "Do
you know why they're having the meeting?" I said no — and
I really didn't; nobody had confided in me.
Well, the next thing that happened was that the follow-
ing morning one of the regents — I think it was probably
Norton Simon; it could have been Mrs. Chandler — came to me
and said, "Franklin, this thing may blow tomorrow, because
there was a serious discussion last night as to whether
given, now, all of these circumstances, Clark can continue
to give the kind of leadership to the institution." Clark
was then called — my recollection is — into a meeting where
he laid an ultimatum on the table and demanded a vote of
confidence. Clark had done this a time or two before,
months before, and had gotten away with it. But he, in
effect, said that he'd heard a lot of rumors and this and
this, and that he wanted the board to give him a vote of
confidence that he should lead the institution into the
difficult days ahead. He left the meeting of the regents —
which was obviously an executive session--and came back
and had lunch with us. This was Friday lunch.
MINK: With the chancellors?
MURPHY: With the chancellors. He didn't tell us that he'd
done this. By this time I was feeling so awful — I had, as
I say, this terrible earache — that I called up Hansena and
I said, "Please make an appointment at UCLA Medical Center
with Dr. [Victor] Goodhill or somebody that knows about
ears, because I'm really very sick, and I'm going to come
right down and go directly from the airport to the Medical
So I left about noon. I got on the airplane, came
down; and as I was driving in from the airport, I turned on
the radio and heard that Clark Kerr's resignation had been
accepted by the regents. I must say, I was surprised.
I knew he was in trouble, but I didn't know that he was
in that deep trouble, because at that point there was no
way that Governor Reagan [could have done it] . He only
had about two or three votes. He had appointed no regents,
and he had only the head of agriculture and [Max] Rafferty,
the state superintendent of public instruction, both of
whom are ex officio. But the motion, interestingly, as
I understand it — and you'll have to talk to some regents
about this, like Carter or Pauley or Mrs. Chandler — was
made by some moderate regent who had just come to the con-
clusion that this was no longer possible. And I just
guessed that Clark made a miscalculation, that he never
really dreamed that this could and would happen.
Let me say, having finished this Kerr episode, thinking
back over what I've said, one might be able to interpret
that I disliked Clark Kerr, or that I envied him or envied
him his job. The facts are, I had then and still retain
very great respect for him as an absolutely first-class man.
He's a man, really, of great personal integrity, although
administratively he comes out of labor relations and so on.
He had a technique of trying to avoid confrontations, which
sometimes can be interpreted as being devious. My differences
with him arose from only one issue, which was that I felt
that for as far back as I could look into the history of
UCLA, and down to the times I was there, UCLA had been
discriminated against in terms of evenhanded treatment
vis-a-vis Berkeley. And had there been, from the beginning,
evenhanded treatment, provable evenhanded treatment, there
would have been no differences whatsoever between us. But
I was not about — as I said, I guess, before--to go down the
same track that Clarence Dykstra had gone down and that
Ray Allen had gone down.
I believe that the whole Kerr episode was a tragedy.
I think as far as the overall University of California is
concerned, it was enormously contributed to by Clark Kerr.
And I think that when the dust has settled and people can
get a little perspective on that, that Clark will go down
as a strong and gifted president. But in spite of every-
thing, my job was to build UCLA, and I wasn't about to let
anybody prevent that from happening.
Now, the next episode in this whole thing till I
left was that immediately Harry Wellman was made acting
president, and he was the only logical person. He had
total confidence in all the chancellors. He knew he was
an interregnum, and so he tried to keep the lid on things;
and we all cooperated with him. We knew this was no time
to be having any internecine warfare.
Then the whole question came up as to who would
succeed Clark. I was approached by several of the regents —
privately, of course--and also by Roger Heyns . Roger and
I had become very, very close. Roger felt keenly that I
should do this; I had been around longer and so on. I
explained to Roger that I would under no circumstances
do it, and I also did to the regents. But I took that
opportunity to say, "Now, above everything else, please
pick somebody outside of the University of California.
Most of our difficulties have arisen from the fact that a
Berkeley-oriented man has tried to run the whole system.
And even if he'd been evenhanded, he would have been open
to the criticism that he was taking care of alma mater — that
is to say, the Berkeley campus." And as a matter of fact,
I had gotten to know Charlie Hitch very well, and I, in
a sense, sort of became a campaign manager for Charlie. I
felt that he had the skills; he had the administrative back-
ground; he was not identified with any one campus. The
regents had developed great confidence in him as financial
vice-president. He was low-key, quiet; he was a man of
great integrity. All the chancellors held him in the highest
regard. And when Charlie was appointed, nobody was happier
than I .
The accusation was made, of course, that the reason
I left was because I was not appointed president. Well,
the facts are that there are plenty of regents who are
witness to the fact that I said more than once to them that
if nominated, I won't run; if elected I won't serve,
absolutely not. Because I had made it clear that my
satisfaction in university administration was living on
a campus. And if I were to go into a purely administra-
tive post, unrelated to the educational process, well then,
why stay in the university? But really — and I may have
said this earlier, I can't remember--! had long since made
up my mind that ten to twelve years was the maximum time
you ought to spend on a university campus. You've done
the most you could by then; it was housekeeping from that
point on. It was really rather healthy for a new voice and
a new set of energy.
Secondly, and quite honestly, I was getting very
fatigued in higher education. I'd been in it for twenty
years, and Mrs. Murphy and I had not owned our life one
minute of that time. And then, on top of this fatigue,
came the student unrest, came some of the irrational acts
of the faculty in not standing up against student fascism.
And it was kind of disappointing, because higher education
had always been an idealistic thing to me, a free market-
place of ideas, and here I saw these young fascists running
around knocking down windows and denying one person the
right to speak if they didn't speak their way. So it was
a combination of a commitment I've made to myself to move
on after ten or twelve years, plus fatigue after twenty.
plus this final little bit of extra fatigue and dis-
illusionment. I was losing my temper; I was getting
short-tempered with the students. Chuck Young and others
would say, "Franklin, you've never been like this before."
And I'd say, "You know, you're right." And I knew that
the time was ripe.
MINK: I think there's one other point where speculation
was made--and maybe I asked you this, too, when you spoke
about this at the very beginning of the interview--but
there was some speculation that you saw in the coming Reagan
administration budgetary cuts, pinches, which would not
allow you to perform for UCLA up to your past standard.
MURPHY: Sure. Well, I mean, that's a perfectly fair
conclusion to have reached. But I tell you, really, that
was very minimally in my mind. It was the fact that I was
going to leave anyway. I'd left Kansas after nine years;
I was going to leave here after x number of years, certainly
no more than ten or twelve — and I used to say that. But
I think more than anything else it was a sense of just
fatigue. I'd run out of gas.
MINK: If all these other factors had been erased, you
would have stayed on and fought with the Reagan policies
of austerity in the university?
MURPHY: Oh, of course. You know, I was the one who stood
up at that meeting out here and said I wasn't elected
chancellor to preside at the liquidation of the University
of California, right in the presence of Reagan. I had no
problem in wanting to fight him. But really, as I say,
I was running out of gas by then. You can do these jobs
just so long. I think there's no more demanding job in
American society today than running a large, complex uni-
versity. You belong to everybody; your time is not your
own. It's worse than being a politician, almost, in terms
of dinners and lunches and football games and basketball
games. Your house is not your own; it belongs to everybody
MINK: Parenthetically, I can't resist saying what lunches
you go to, because this most recent one....
MURPHY: Oh, the Bob Haldeman thing. [laughter] Well,
that's another interesting little footnote.
But anyway, I said to myself, "What am I going to do?
I'm going to leave." Well, there were several ■ things .
Frankly, if the Times-Mirror offer hadn't come along, I
would have probably stayed another couple of years. But
I didn't want to go into foundation work, because that's
just a nothing. I knew I didn't want to take on a third
university. And I knew I didn't want to go into public
life. I'd been pressured all along to run for governor
or senator or something, but I was trying to escape from
belonging to the public. I wanted a sabbatical from the
public, a little private life.
So the only thing that was left was the industrial
world, the business world, and I was not unfamiliar with
it. I'd served on boards of corporations and so on. But
I didn't want to make tin cans or run a company that makes
steel and so on. I didn't want to leave Southern California,
because I'd come to really love living here. And one day,
when Norman Chandler called and said he wanted to talk to
me — I'd been on the board of the Times-Mirror Company, of
course — and said he was ready to step down and would I like
to take his place, it all came together. I mean, it was
a business job; it was in Southern California; and it was
in a field that I had a great interest in: publishing,
which is, in a sense, a different kind of educational set
of processes. So it was just like everything fitting
together in a most unpredictable and remarkable way.
MINK: Good Irish luck.
MURPHY: Really was; it was just good Irish luck. So
there it is. I think that, in retrospect, I did get out
at the right time. I must say in all honesty that I
lobbied very hard for Chuck to succe
sciences, let's say in the area of arts and sciences (with
the possible exception of the law school, and I can even
argue the Boalt Hall problem) , the same degree of distinc-
tion had not been achieved in the professional schools.
Nobody ever talked about the Berkeley School of Business
Administration. The San Francisco Medical Center was
ranked somewhere in the middle of medical schools around
the country. The School of Dentistry at San Francisco had
a very average reputation--countrywide , I mean. And I
always puzzled about this.
Then I finally came to realize what the problem was:
that you had a multipurpose campus being run by arts and
science. Now, if that had existed at Harvard or Yale,
you would never have had the great medical and law and
business administration programs in those places. And
frankly, it's my own view that the giant strides--and I
think they are giant strides--that have been made in the
professional schools at UCLA are in a large measure related
to the fact that now you're measuring lawyers against law-
yers, doctors against doctors, and dentists against dentists,
rather than physicists against doctors or biologists
Well, that, I think, was my major set of differences
with the Academic Senate, and I think we finally talked
this out. I don't think this was anybody conquering any-
body else; I think we finally reached an understanding
that we'd measure things this way. Now, in the area of
arts and sciences, our differences were practically negli-
gible. I just assumed that the chemists knew more about
chemistry than I did, and if they said this fellow ought
not to be appointed, he shouldn't be. So in the end, I'd
have to say our differences were relatively very small.
Of course, the final point of power came when, toward the
end of the Kerr regime, we got, finally, the regents to
agree that the ultimate decision on appointments and pro-
motions would be left to the campus.
MINK: And that was soon taken back after the Angela Davis..
MURPHY: Well, let me say that....
MINK: It was a giant step backward, I'm afraid.
MURPHY: No, no, wait a minute. It really isn't, and I'll
tell you why, if I understand it correctly. You have to
understand the nuances. When we were in this struggle with
Berkeley about where the final authority would be, Kerr
engaged in a very interesting ploy. When finding all the
chancellors were aligned against him on this issue, he knew
that there was a great sympathy to get it done within the
regents. And our proposal was this: that we go through
the process, you have the budget committee and the senate
apparatus comment, it goes to the chancellor's office,
then the chancellor says yea or nay within the budgetary
guidelines, then that recommendation be transmitted by the
president to the regents, without comment, just trans-
mitted. Kerr's ploy was that there's no way he'd be wil-
ling to do that because he was unwilling to take the res-
ponsibility of appearing to approve this without in fact
having the authority to approve it. So to his amazement,
and I must say mine, the regents at that particular meeting
said, "Well, look, we don't want to fool with it at all,
anyway. So it doesn't even need to be transmitted. The
chancellor can just act in the name of the regents."
TAPE NUriBER: IV, Side 2
NOVEMBER 15, 19 73
MURPHY: Now, this action of the regents, that they didn't
even want to be in the act, is something that we hadn't
dreamed was an action they'd take, and we didn't want it.
We simply wanted our recommendations to go to them for
their reaction rather than being second-guessed by the
president's office. So not only was Kerr nonplussed,
but so were we. This was not only a pie, this was a pie
and a half. We didn't really want it. Okay. I must say,
it speeded things up, because once we made a decision, we
could call a guy on the telephone; and when we were in
the heavy recruiting business, speed was very important.
But--now, here's where I get on a little thin ice —
there came the Angela Davis problem; and at that point,
because of the way that thing had to be worked out, the
regents took over that authority from the chancellor. Then
there was a reexamination. Now, as I understand it, the
chancellor makes his final decision, and the president's
office conduits it to the regents, which is precisely what
we wanted in the beginning, because I think it is quite
wrong for the regents not to have the final authority,
especially with tenure and appointments. The regents,
after all, have the responsibility of the fiscal stability
of the university; they had the fiduciary responsibility.
When you make a tenured appointment or promote somebody
to tenure, you're making a lifetime contract with that
man. You're committing, I don't know, a half a million
dollars of the public's money. I don't know any university
in America where the regents don't, usually pro forma, say
aye or nay in the final analysis. And the regents appoint
the tenured professor. I think that that's the way it
ought to be.
The thing I was objecting to was the chancellor being
second-guessed by someone in Berkeley who didn't know any-
thing about it. And my understanding is that that second-
guessing is still out. The regents are back in the act.
But again, I repeat, I didn't ever want them out of the act.
As I say, I know of no university in the country where
they aren't in the act. I think from everything Chuck and
the others tell me that it's as different as night and day
from the old days, when you'd go through a time-consioming
process and then you'd just get a note back from Berkeley
saying, "I disapprove." And you'd call up and say, "Well,
why?" "Well, it doesn't look right to me." "What inves-
tigations have you made?" "Well, I talked to somebody in
the Berkeley department and he doesn't think this fellow's
that good." I used to get that sort of thing. And that,
apparently, doesn't happen anymore.
Well, anyway, my relations with the Academic Senate,
I look back on with great satisfaction. I enjoyed it.
The discussions were sometimes spirited, but they were
always in good faith. We agreed to disagree with a smile.
Nobody yelled at each other, and in the end we were working
very, very smoothly.
MINK: Did you get a chance to speak out whenever you wanted
to in the senate? You could go down and speak?
MURPHY: Oh, yes, and did.
MINK: And did. You didn't have any resentment?
MURPHY: No, none at all.
MINK: I don't think the chancellors tended to. I don't
think Allen tended much to.
MURPHY: I used to get much involved in senate meetings.
But, you know, it was the old. .. there ' s so many bits of
nonsense. I remember the first senate meeting I went to.
There was the agenda, some phrase like report, or announce-
ments or something, by the president. The chancellor's
not even mentioned! I looked up the standing orders; sure
enough, there was no provision in the standing orders that
in the senate meeting the chancellor would have the same
right to comment as the president. I went to the senate
fellows right away, and I said, "This is ridiculous. The
president isn't here anyway most of the time, and when he
comes, it's ceremonial. If you really want this thing to
be pragmatic and work, you can cross out the president
and you wouldn't miss a thing. But at least you've got
to have the chancellor." Well, they finally agreed they
ought to, and I took advantage of it. I don't think there
was a senate meeting that I ever missed. I built my calen-
dar around it. And I doubt if there was a single senate
meeting in which I didn't have something to say to start
MINK: Well, this would give you an opportunity, say, to
funnel back information that you'd gained through regents'
MURPHY: Absolutely. As a matter of fact, when I got
here, the Kerr administration had created some pattern for
all the campuses. They had to have something called the
executive council. And they said, "This is who should be
on it." Well, I forget what it was; I just remember I
thought it was ridiculous, so I never had a meeting with
the executive council, as such. And that was to meet every
two months or something. What I did was to create the Council
of Deans, which didn't exist in these standing orders. That's
another thing. [In] the University of California system,
when I arrived, the deans didn't amount to a damn. It was
amazing how little power they had in all kinds of processes,
which I thought, again, was wrong in terms of responsibility.
I created this Council of Deans, and then added people ex
officio — the librarian, some of the business people, and
MINK: Wasn't Public Affairs Services in that?
MURPHY: Yeah, well, I had them there all the time, Andy
or somebody. But then I also added, shortly thereafter,
key senate people--the chairman of the senate, the chair-
men of the key committees of the senate. And so I would
have a meeting of this committee, this group, the Monday
morning after the Friday regents' meeting, in which I had
given a total report on what went on, and even attitudes.
These fellows down here, I'll bet you, knew earlier more
about the insecure position of Clark Kerr than nearly any-
body, because I was very candid with them, and they always
kept their confidence. I never read in the Daily Bruin or
something. . . .
MINK: I think that's perfectly true, because I think as
far as the campus community at UCLA was concerned, the
insecure position of Kerr wasn't known, really, which is
a good commentary on the confidentiality.
MURPHY: Yes. But these fellows, they knew a lot of things.
But the point is, they knew precisely what happened on the
following Monday, and then the deans could go back, and if
it were related to anything that was germane, they could
bring the department chairman in the following day; so that
by the end of the following week, everybody who needed to
know knew. I also frequently met at lunch with, say, the
whole budget committee, not about a man or a problem, but
about philosophy. I would meet with the Graduate Council
from time to time and talk about, very candidly, "Why is
this department, say, the Spanish department, which used
to be very good--what can you do about this?" I asked the
budget committee somewhere along the line to make a sub-
committee to advise us on weak departments, what we should
be doing with FTE .
So my concern about the Academic Senate never related
to my inability to get along. In fact, I wish we could have
had more dialogue. It was basically the amount of time we
had to waste getting this decentralization. You know, as
I look back on my years out there, if what we ended up with
in terms of administrative authority and responsibility--
which incidentally didn't destroy the university at all.
It made certain bureaucrats in Berkeley less potent, but
I think it strengthened the university. They had to have
it with these young campuses coming along. God, they
couldn't be run like adjuncts to some third-level bureau-
crat. When I look back, if I and Chuck Young and Foster
Sherwood and certain committees of the senate had had the
same administrative structure in the beginning that we
ended up with, we would have been able to do so many more
things, constructive things.
MINK: So much wheelspinning .
MURPHY: Just for nothing. Parenthetically, and in all
fairness to Clark Kerr, I think he really didn't want to
give up a lot of authority, but I don't blame him nearly
as much as I blame the second-level people, the shadowy
bureaucracy that had no responsibility, no public visi-
bility, and didn't have any responsibility to the regents
or anything else, but by delegation had a whole lot of
power and they didn't want to give it up. They didn't
want to give it back to the campuses. And this is, of
course, the kind of thing you see in any bureaucracy.
Federal, state, or otherwise. Little people with power
do not want to give it up, regardless of the logic or illogic.
MINK: I wonder if you would speak a little while about the
work that you did in the beginning--! think it was towards
the beginning of your administration--to set up a better
alumni arrangement, the setting-up of the UCLA Foundation,
the bringing in of Doug Kinsey. Why did you think this was
necessary to begin with?
MURPHY: When I came, I got to know the ex-presidents of
the Alumni Association very quickly. As you know, they
were all dedicated, and they all believed in UCLA. They'd
had to fight hard for it. They had all served, many of
them, on the board as ex officios. But I'd become accustomed
to a very powerful alumni organization in Kansas. As I
told you earlier, they were the ones that permitted me
to beat this crazy governor year after year, override his
MINK: Well, what was your assessment of ours when you
MURPHY: As I got into it, I was enormously impressed with
the dedication of these ex-presidents and absolutely shocked
at the weakness of the basic organization. Honestly, in
some respects, to me it didn't exist. Sure, you could
mobilize some people for the USC football game or this or
that. There were some of these organizations like Blue
Shield that didn't do anything. They had a dinner once a
year, and nothing transpired. The groups that were involved
were the same people that had been talking to each other
for twenty-five years. Some of the women's groups. Gold
Shield, would spin their wheels, and then they'd come up
with two scholarships per year. There was no annual giving
of consequence, and quite honestly--and I'll have to say
plainly — as I got into the staff down there, it was clear
to me that it just wasn't up in terms of understanding and
strength and capacity to build an aliamni organization almost
from scratch, in a certain sense.
And the best symbol of that was something that really
amazed me. Here was this great, rich university, this huge
alumni body with really extraordinary budgets as compared
with what I'd been accustomed to operating in Kansas, in
one of the richest cities in the United States. So Harry
Longway, who was then the aliimni secretary, came over,
and he said, "You know, I need a little help from you."
And I said, "What's that?" He said, "You know, we've got
a little more space in Kerckhoff Hall now, and I'd kind
of like to upgrade it a little bit and get some draperies
in there and new pieces of furniture in some of the new
rooms we're getting," But, he said, "I've got to convince
the alumni board of this." "Well," I said, "what are we
talking about in money?" He said, "About $30,000." I
said, "Are you worried about getting money for that?"
"Oh," he said, "it's going to be very tough." He said,
"In fact, I put some feelers out, and it looks like I'm
not going to get it. So we're having a meeting of the
executive committee of the alumni board at the California
Club or Jonathan Club, and would you come to the meeting
and help me?" I said, "First of all, I'd like to go over
it." So I went over there and looked at what they were
talking about, which was nothing. Nothing. And I went
to this meeting, and I heard these people debate this
issue, and I couldn't believe it. And I just got angry
finally, and I said, "Look, I've got to go." But I said,
"You know, I really believe this. If you guys can't find
$30,000 to make this a respectable kind of a place on campus
when the physics department is spending that every minute,"
I said, "really, I think you ought to disband." I got up
and walked out. Well, needless to say, they got the $30,000
by making a few phone calls around to some people.
I got to thinking about this, and I started talking
to some of the old-time alumni presidents, who had to
admit to me that we didn't know who the al-umni were. They
didn't have any money to put the people's names on a computer.
We'd done that at Kansas, little old Kansas. They didn't
know who their alumni were, where they lived. And there
was no annual fund or anything else. Let's see, who was
the president then? I guess it was Tom Davis.
MINK: Tom Davis was probably one who you talked to.
There were others. Elder Morgan was still around.
MURPHY: No, I didn't talk to him.
MINK: You didn't talk to Elder Morgan?
MURPHY: No. I think it was Tom that I finally went to,
Tom and Phil--Phil was still alive. When Tom became pres-
ident, I said, "Tom, you've got a chance now to rejuvenate
this damned thing." And we'd been talking about the memorial
activities campaign; that was a trigger. But," I said, "we
aren't going to be able to do anything until we get a new
secretary. I'm convinced of that." To make a long story
short, Doug came aboard. Doug, with his f ailings--and
who doesn't have a few failings — made an enormous contri-
bution to this whole thing. Energetic, committed, smooth,
wanted to go first class, wasn't brainwashed by the old
MINK: The hangdog.
MURPHY: Yeah, precisely. And we started a whole lot of
things at once, as you know: the annual giving, the
Chancellor's Associates, the memorial activities campaign.
We beefed up the staff. I went up to Berkeley and got out
of the regents — again with the greatest difficulty; getting
it even to the regents through the statewide administration
was pulling teeth — that they ought to make an investment
of a few hundred thousand dollars in the Alumni Association.
Let us hire some people. That would come back tenfold in
private giving. So we got regents' financing. I, to be
perfectly honest with you, used state funds and picked up
some bills that I probably shouldn't have, bootlegged some
other money in temporarily, and very quickly, under Doug's
leadership and enthusiasm, we began adding a staff. We
got that marvelous Nancy Nay lor in, who I think has done
a superb job with a magazine which, prior to that, was just
nothing relatively, in my view, with some interesting,
thoughtful articles, you know, rather than just a listing
of what the class of '36 was doing. Doug began organizing
the alumni county by county on annual giving; he got the
associates thing going. All I can say is that with Tom
Davis's enthusiasm and toughness--Tom was critical in this,
really; I don't think it would have happened without Tom's
support, both in the board and also while he was active
as president--and Doug's enthusiasm, you know, it all
happened. The names on computers, people started getting
done; we started developing techniques and giving asso-
ciates certain benefits. And Chuck was there, right all
along, when this was happening.
It was very, very sad, in my view, that Doug had to
leave. In fact, I would have overlooked any kind of indis-
cretion. There but for the grace of God goes everybody.
But the alumni president and vice-president at that time
were very uptight about this, creating some morale problems
down here in the shop, so Doug had to go.
MINK: I didn't know--maybe you don't want to put this into
the record--exactly why it was?
MURPHY: Well, let us simply say that Doug was a little
careless in his personal life. I don't want to get into
any details, except to say that it created some problems
down there. But it can never be taken away from Doug
that the great vitality that currently exists there now
in all directions — in fund raising and in alumni activities
and so on — that it really all started with Doug and Tom
Davis. Now, I don't want to take anything away from Chuck;
on the contrary, I think he's done a fantastic job. And I
think Don Bowman, in a quiet way, has done a great job
in building up the organization and giving it full support.
No, I look back on that as one of my major contributions
to the place.
MINK: One other thing. Where precisely did the idea
of the UCLA Foundation generate?
MURPHY: It came from me. That and the annual giving
MINK: I think the UCLA Foundation has been a wonderful
thing for fund raising.
MURPHY: There's the foundation, and then there are the
MINK: Well, I'm thinking of the foundation.
MURPHY: There were really three things. Now, they had
some kind of a weak annual giving thing. I forget what
they called it, but it was just sort of passive. But
what we established was an ongoing, hard-hitting, annual
giving thing. This was based on the theory that you go
after your alumni for five-, ten-, twenty-five-, hundred-
dollar, two hundred-dollar annual gifts to your alma mater.
Secondly, there was the Chancellor's Associates. Here you
were going after $1,000 a year for ten years from the
bigger giver, the one who could give more. And finally,
the UCLA Foundation, which would be concerned with bequests
and with really major projects, where you were talking about
thousands or, as it turned out, millions. These were all
to be dovetailed and integrated. In the beginning, we
separated that function from the Alumni Association, really
because the Alumni Association was a little standoffish,
because in order to get the other operation going, the
fund-raising operation going, we had to use non- Alumni-
Association money. There were very fearful of taking
regents' money. They didn't want to get hooked back up
again with Berkeley. That was finally, in the end, for
logical reasons — because most of the money's going to
come from alumni--brought back together.
The second issue we faced was who would invest and
handle the money: the regents, who had always done it, or
the foundation itself? In the beginning, I said let the
regents do it, because the foundation isn't big enough;
there aren't enough knowledgeable people involved in it
yet; we can't have a good finance committee. But at a
time when you reach a critical mass, when you've got real
money coming in, you've got lots of people — investment
bankers and accountants and so on — on the board, and you
can get an investment subcommittee, then you should take
it away from the regents. Well, they've done that now,
MINK: Well, that's what's so great. It really is. This
means that when we get endowments for specific purposes
like oral history, we can put it in the foundation and
avoid. . .
MINK: ...taking a lower interest than you'd get from a
MURPHY: The model I had for this was the first thing of
its kind ever established in a public institution in the
United States. It's called the Kansas University Endow-
MINK: So it was patterned, really, after your Kansas exper-
MURPHY: Exactly. I, in fact, wrote back there and had
Irv Youngberg, who's the longtime director of it, send
out all of the bylaws and everything else. And this was
the model. They had the problem there. It was even worse
in Kansas. Any money given to the university before this
went into the state treasury, by God; and to get it back
out, you had to go through all the bureaucracy--not just
to the regents, now, but to the state treasury. Imagine!
So we just set up this parallel. I didn't. This was set
up in Kansas back in 1912, I think. And incidentally,
that little University of Kansas, which isn't that big,
Kansas University Endowment Association today has assets
of $70 million dollars.
This one is going to have huge sums of money these
days, because you've got many more alumni; you've got
a much richer community from which to grab it. And as
you know, year after year (Bill Forbes, who's still on
the regents, loves to send me this, because he frequently
comments that in a certain sense I woke the regents up
to their opportunities in private giving) , I think for the
past, I don't know, eight or ten years, UCLA shows annually
that it brings in more private money than any campus of
the university, including Berkeley. And this ought to
just continue to go, and I think it certainly is going to
with Chuck's total enthusiasm about it. You picked out
a subject that was something that was really very close
to me. And you had to be successful, because you found
nothing. You couldn't do worse.
MINK: One of the things that's been mentioned as being
one of your strong points was the individual, face-to-face,
money-raising activities that you engaged in. I wonder if
you could talk about some of those, and maybe about your
experiences and what your technique was.
MURPHY: Well, I don't know that I can describe any tech-
nique. I've always been a bit of a peddler or a salesman.
My father was a doctor and a bit of an intellectual, and
my mother was a concert pianist, and my aunt a painter;
so I was always living in a sort of an esoteric intellec-
tual world. But I had a tough old uncle who never went
to college, was a self-made businessman, very successful.
And he convinced my father that I should be given to him
each summer, from about the time I was twelve years old
or something, to work. I worked for five summers in a
department store, starting as a stockboy and becoming
finally a salesman, and I enjoyed selling. It was lots
of fun. It was a highly competitive exercise, because if
a lady came in and wanted to buy a tie for her husband,
then the challenge was, couldn't I sell her three ties?
And I've always enjoyed this kind of peddling, if you want
to call it that.
Well, of course, the great advantage is that when
you're peddling an idea for support within the university,
you're peddling something of very high quality. And if
you can conceive and phrase it correctly and communicate
some enthusiasm, it's pretty hard to fail, assuming that
there is money in the pocket of the person you're talking
to. And there are many different ways of getting at it.
I'll give you one example of many, many. One day
Bob Vosper called me up, and he said, "There's a young
man on the faculty spending a sabbatical year in Israel.
He just called me, and the entire library of a very old
bookseller firm is up for sale." This was a firm, German-
Jewish. It was started in Frankfurt, had been driven out
of Germany by Hitler, so they'd taken their stock and
moved to Vienna. And they'd been drive out of Vienna
when Hitler came in with the Anschluss, and they'd gone
to Israel. And the last member of the family had died,
and the children had disappeared into the Diaspora some-
where, and nobody was interested in carrying on; and here
was this huge book stock. And the fellow [Arnie Band]
who was over there was one of our very bright young people
in Jewish studies, Hebrew, at UCLA. So Bob said, "Can't
we get them?" I said, "Well, how much is involved?" He
said, "About a $120,000." Parenthetically, Bob told me
the other day that Shimeon Brisman told him that to buy
that library today would cost you $1 million.
So, where do I get $120,000? Now, it had to be cash,
and it had to be like in six days. Well, you know, you
develop a network of contacts, and I called up my friend
Eliot Corday, who is a doctor and one of the leading
cardiologists in the Beverly Hills-Los Angeles area —
devoted to UCLA. Obviously I knew that he had not only
Jewish patients but very wealthy Jewish patients. And I
told him my story, and I wound up by saying, "Eliot, look.
Los Angeles is the second largest Jewish city in the United
States, maybe in the world. There is a deep interest on
the part of the Jews in this community about their culture,
and there ought to be a great Jewish library here to be
used not just by UCLA people but by the several Jewish
seminaries and so on, and there just isn't. And we have
this opportunity. It'd be sinful to let it go by. And he
said, "Well, I'll call you back. How much time have I got?"
I said, "I need to know by tomorrow." By golly, that night
he said, "Can you come to lunch?" He had arranged to have
Ted Ciammings--whom I knew slightly; I now know Ted much
better — and me, and the three of us had lunch. Eliot said,
"Tell Ted your story," and I walked out of there with a
check for $110,000, because the story was the same one I
"Targets of opportunity" is what I call them. I've
never been much interested in the fund-raising side of
going out and getting routine money. That's more for the
professional. The challenge to me is to seize a target of
MINK: In other words, you have to have something to offer.
MURPHY: Right. To match the man with the need. And that's
fun. Then you're really putting something together. Because
the great satisfaction that I have about raising money is
the satisfaction that the donor has after he's given it.
And you know, if you get a donor who gives you money, and
you make a pitch, and a lot of people have made pitches to
him before, he wonders how much of this is rhetoric and
how much of it's substance. But if you make the pitch,
and you make the sale, and you can go back to him and show
him that, if anything, you understated the opportunity
for him, you know, you've got a lifelong friend and you've
got a potential resource.
A classic example is Ed Pauley. We knew when we did
the Memorial Activities Center that to really do it right
I had to put a package together. I finally convinced the
state that for certain activities they owed us some money,
that it was proper for them to put some money up. We put
together a package for the alumni to raise. (Those were
the days before--quite mistakenly, in my view — the admin-
istration gave away to the students the right to say what
would happen to the fees; I would never have done that.
I'd have let them advise, but still make the final decision.)
I agreed to put in some student fee money. We all knew
we were short about $1 million. Okay. Ed Pauley had
already given $1 million to Berkeley for part of some
ballroom in the [Student] Union. I knew Ed's deep interest
in UCLA — we were great personal friends — but above all else,
I knew his interest in athletics. He was my target, then.
I remember when we made the pitch. I asked John
Canaday to help me and Ed Carter. And it was at Berkeley
in that old hotel up there, the Claremont Hotel, in that
cocktail lounge. Well, we got him after a regents' meeting.
We all sat down in the cocktail lounge, and I said, "Ed,
I want to make a proposition to you." He said, "What's
that?" And so I made it. I said, "It's going to be a
$5 million structure. It's going to be the finest indoor
pavilion in Southern California, maybe one of the best in
the United States. It's going to be multipurpose — basket-
ball, public events — and if you will give us $1 million,
we can build it, because we've got commitments all the way
around. We've got a $5 million building for $1 million.
And it'll be called Pauley Pavilion." (I conceived that
name.) And I said, "Ed, I'll bet you that the name Pauley
Pavilion, which already sounds good because it's allitera-
tive, will be in the newspaper more than Royce Hall or the
Dorothy Chandler Pavilion or anything else."
MINK: Well, after [John] Wooden the past seven years, I
guess that's true.
MURPHY: I really hadn't counted on this. But in any event,
you knew it was a central facility. Well, then John chimed
in a little bit; Ed Carter chimed in a little. And Ed
finally said he wanted to think about it a little bit, and
then he came back and he said, "Okay, I'll go." And I said,
"Now, remember, I made you this promise. As a matter of
fact, we're going to open it with a nonathletic event, but
it'll be jammed for athletic events."
Ed Pauley has more than half a dozen times said to me,
"You know, that's the only gift I ever gave anybody where
the performance has matched the pitch. They gave me an even
wilder pitch at Berkeley, and," he said, "I should have
spent my million dollars for something entirely different.
As I look back on it, what the hell is a ballroom?" And
he said, "You know, I am so proud of that, and I'm so proud
of being identified in such a constructive and, to me, happy
way with the University of California that," he said, "you
can be very sure at my death I'll not forget it."
So you match the man's interest with your need. To
me, that's constructive fund raising. The other kind of
fund raising is more routine. Not that it isn't compli-
cated, but it is kind of routine. Can we turn that off
just a minute?
MINK: Sure. [tape recorder turned off]
MURPHY: All right, so what's next?
MINK: When you came, as far as the idea of seeing a lack
of private support and maybe wanting to go into this area
of private support, you didn't see any one area that you
thought where this support should be channeled to over
another — no priorities?
MUPIPHY: No, not really. I sort of didn't mix the two
together, in a sense. I knew that, on the one hand, I had
my own ideas of things that I felt needed to be strengthened
and built up: the health sciences, the library, fine arts.
That was sort of, you might say, the academic plan or pro-
gram. On the other side, there was the whole broad area
of private money: private money from alumni, private
money from foundations, private money from individuals
in the community with special interests. Now, to the
extent possible, you put those two together. You knew
that Jules Stein was interested in ophthalmology, and
you were interested in building up the medical school;
so these finally come together. You knew that Ed Pauley
was interested in athletics; you had made a commitment to
bring athletics back to the campus. V7ell, these two things
come together. If, let us say, there had been a wealthy
man interested in building a rare-book library because
he was a rare-book collector, I could have gone to him to
get a wing on the library. So this is the question of
finding the interest that matches the need.
But then beyond that, there's the general flow of
money which is unrestricted, which the chancellor can then
move. I had the Connell endowment, [Michael J. Connell
Memorial Fund], and I finally broke that loose from Berkeley.
You know, that Connell endowment, that's done so much around
here, when I came here you couldn't spend a nickel of it
without asking Berkeley. And yet it was given to us . I
got that done in the first couple of years. And as I look
back, I can't believe; I repeat: If we had been permitted
the same operational thing at the beginning that we had in
the end, I'd have had hundreds of hours to be doing the
constructive things, getting more money out of the commun-
ity, working with the Rockefeller and the Ford foundations
instead of fighting with these people up north. It was so
wasteful. But the main thing, I think, has been that a
tradition of private giving has now really been established.
And I think the momentum is up, and I think there's only
one way to go.
MINK: When you first came here, did you notice an anti-
pathy from the private institutions against tapping of
private funds for this institution?
MURPHY: Oh, yes. As a matter of fact, not only antipathy,
but it was pretty bitter. So I finally sat down with Norman
Topping at lunch — Norman Topping had been at USC--and Lee
DuBridge of Caltech. I said, "Now, look. Let's be rational
and reasonable about this."
MINK: Did you have them both at the same lunch?
MURPHY: Yes. I said, "There are two kinds of money that
you cannot deny us the right of getting. Number one, going
to our alumni--annual fund raising, whatever. This is true
of every private or public university in America." They
agreed. I said, "Secondly, you cannot deny us the right to
accept money from the individual who, let us say, has a
particular interest in medicine or medical history or some-
thing, who says, 'I want to give $1 million to build an
eye institute.' It's either going to be built at UCLA or
it isn't going to be built at all. Now, given those
two rights, I make a compact with you that we will have
no large-scale fund raising at UCLA on an annual basis
that goes out beyond the alumni, where you tap every
corporation and every this or that. That should be your
So we reached an agreement, and we've pretty well
stuck to it, I guess, from what I can gather. We certainly
did during my time. The only area we had some trouble with
off and on was the school of business.
MINK: Yes, I was going to bring it up.
MURPHY: Obviously, you've got graduates that are going
into businesses, and they want it. So I finally got
Topping and DuBridge to agree that to the extent that
corporations wanted to make grants to the UCLA school
of business it was okay, but we would not go to the corp-
orations for general support of the university.
MINK: Which I think had been done, like Jacoby had gotten
together ninety big corporations at a luncheon meeting and
MURPHY: That's right.
MINK: I think that this is what made the bomb go off.
MURPHY: Yes. Well, we had to cool that back, and then
I had to go back to DuBridge and Topping. And I finally
said, "Well, look, it is quite wrong for the dean of the
medical school to start a big fund-raising drive among
California corporations, or for Don Bowman or Doug Kinsey
to go out and ask every corporation to give them $2,500
for the general support of the university. That's just
wrong. But," I said, "you've got to accept the fact that
to go to General Electric to ask for a fellowship in the
school of business is not unreasonable, because they're
taking our graduates." So we sort of got over that. That
was the only rough problem I had.
Topping was very supportive. He and I worked out
an arrangement. I'd go down and testify before the city
council on behalf of USC and the urban redevelopment when
that was in trouble; Topping would encourage his legisla-
tive friends to support the university appropriation. So
I think that worked out pretty well.
MINK: That was probably the first kind of rapprochement
that had ever been worked out with the University of
MURPHY: That's what Norman said. Norman said that that
was the beginning. And Norman and I agreed, why fight?
We agreed on philosophy, that instead of assuming that the
pie was limited and you were fighting each other to get a
bigger piece of the pie, that we would try to jointly
enlarge the whole pie — and therefore, the same percentage
piece is always larger — and that we hang together or we
hang separately. Topping and I had a warm relationship,
and I think I agree that by that time UCLA was stopping
feeling its inferiority. You know, you can always act
like a statesman if you've got some security, a sense of
security. And UCLA, by that time, had grown up, was growing
up, and we were able to tell the faculty and the students,
"Look, you can stop being hangdog. You're a first-rate
institution." I must say, though, part of that Berkeley
problem always was the fact that these people down here had
been hit over the head for so long that they really had a
kind of conditioned reflex. They wouldn't fight. And in
the end, you know, that disappeared, happily.
TAPE NUMBER: V, Side 1
DECEMBER 6, 1973
MINK: This afternoon, Dr. Murphy, I'd like to ask you
first of all, in connection with the development of fine
arts at UCLA, what you saw when you came here, what the
scene seemed to be like to you?
MURPHY: Well, I'd start by saying that in a way it was
rather spotty. There were some very great positives.
The tradition of Royce Hall being the cultural center for
not really West Los Angeles but in some respects for the
entire city was already well established, with Frances
Inglis laying on really extraordinarily professional pro-
grams at Royce for students, faculty, and for the community,
That was a great positive. Fred Wight and the UCLA Art
Council had begun to get the UCLA galleries going, again in
a very sophisticated fashion. They hadn't geared up to
their ultimate heights, but that show was on the road quite
clearly. Abbott Kaplan was in the process of building the
Theatre Group on the campus, which was, as you will recall,
enormously professional theater, as good as one could see
off -Broadway or any other place. So it was perfectly clear
that important things were under way involving very gifted
On the other hand, there was something called the
Department of Applied Arts — maybe the School of Applied
Arts--which was kind of a bouillabaisse, physical educa-
tion and art history, etc., etc. I should also add that
the physical plant for the theater was rudimentary. In
fact, the physical plant for the arts was rudimentary:
a fine building for music, a good building for art but much
too small, and practically nothing for the theater. So
it was a varied picture.
But above everything else, it was clear to me that
within the faculty and within the community there was a
real hunger and thirst for vitality in the arts. So we
began to make several moves almost in parallel. The first
one was an administrative one. I quickly decided that we
needed to have something called the College of Fine Arts,
to include music, drama, art and art history, the performing
arts, theater, and the dance. And all of the other things
should be stripped away and put in the College of Letters
and Science or, as a matter of fact, eliminated.
MINK: Had there been a committee of the faculty appointed
to look into this before you came, or were you instrumental
in getting this committee appointed?
MURPHY: Really, my memory's vague here. There could have
been a committee just beginning to look into it, or maybe
I appointed the committee. I just don't remember that.
MINK: You remember that home economics was included as
part of this applied arts.
MURPHY: Oh, I remember very well.
MINK: And that was one area that they wanted to move out
along with some of the others.
MURPHY: And I think physical education, military science;
it was a bouillabaisse. The problem of home economics was
a special one, because you remember I finally eliminated that
department; I moved it out and then eliminated it. I must
say, I had more angry women writing me from all over the
state of California than you get angry alumni when you lose
to use at football.
In any event, this was accomplished within a year or
two. And I wanted the College of Fine Arts to really be
germane. I just didn't want it to be a department where
people dabbled in the arts. I wanted to have programs
where people were professionally trained as well as service
programs for nonmajors. This was one of the main factors
that led to my appointment of Bill Melnitz as the first
dean of the new school, because Bill was a pro. He'd been
trained, as you know, by Max Reinhardt; he'd been a profes-
sional theater director in Germany; and he knew what pro-
fessional quality was in the arts. Yet Bill had been around
the university long enough to understand some of the special
problems that the arts have in the university.
MINK: Did you find that there was much opposition to what
you wanted to do among the faculty, the old-guard faculty?
MURPHY: A great deal. And they were not unique. The arts
have never been regarded by the so-called Germanic- type
scholars as an appropriate subject for university activity.
They say it's perfectly all right to study the rhyme of
Shakespeare, but it's not appropriate for a university to
play Shakespeare the way Shakespeare intended. Shakespeare
never, I think, assumed there 'd be people devoting hours
and hours, theses and all the rest, to what he did at eight
o'clock in the morning or where he went to bed at night or
with whom he went to bed at night. Shakespeare wrote for
the theater. I can't understand how anybody can understand
Shakespeare without seeing Shakespeare played. Well, anyway,
that's another subject entirely.
There was a good deal of opposition. There still is,
I suspect, in certain quarters. This is true in American
universities; it's true in German universities; it's true
in English universities. But I will say that in my lifetime
in university work, the arts have come a long way to being
fully accepted in professional terms in colleges and univer-
sities. I think that the day will come when nobody will be
surprised that you're training a lawyer, that you're training
a doctor, or that you're training an actor, or that you're
training a director, or you're training a painter, who intend
to make their living doing that.
But we had no real problems creating the college,
no problems in the appointment of Bill as dean. But then,
as Bill got into the remodeling of the curriculiom, and as
we began to talk about appointment of professional people
to these departments rather than somebody who just talked
about the theater, we began to have tensions within the
Academic Senate and faculty.
MINK: The old question of publications and that sort of
MURPHY: Yes. My theory always was that a theater direc-
tor isn't supposed to publish; he's supposed to direct.
So let's not compare apples and pears. Remember early on
about this apple-pear problem. I might say that it was in
the area of the fine arts where we first began to have
this struggle. It spilled over into other disciplines.
MINK: In the professional schools as well, I'm sure.
MURPHY: Well, that was the first major move. Secondly,
I threw — as I think Abbott Kaplan and Gordon Davidson and
John Houseman will tell you — my total support behind the
Theatre Group. This we managed to do pretty well with
because we didn't have to deal with the Academic Senate;
this was in extension. And it became, as you know, a very
distinguished group and finally moved to the Music Center,
which I think was proper because that more broadly serves
the general public.
We also modified the long-range building program
to expedite the building of the North Campus. And you will
recall that included theater-- two units in the theater,
actually, one for the theater and one for motion pictures
and television. We expedited the new Dickson Art Center
for art higher on the priority list for the building and
thus were able to create that beautiful North Campus with
the sculpture court, which I'll get back to in a moment.
MINK: I might say in this respect, did you encounter
problems in the overall campus planning committee, where
they opposed the development of this area, say, as opposed
to the development of other areas within the university?
MURPHY: Well, yes. You know, everybody wants their
building now. But I just made up my mind that I was going
to see two things happen, if nothing else. Happily, a few
other things happened, too. One was to get that North
Campus built, to create an environment for the arts; and
the other, was to finish the Medical Center, including the
Schools of Public Health and Dentistry. And sure, I had
opposition. But as I told you earlier, I assumed I was
the boss. I listened to everybody and then said, "We're
not going to take a vote. This is the way it's going to
be." And that's the way it turned out. Now, in addition,
we got a lot of other things done too, fortunately. We
got the [University] Research Library done — two-thirds of
it, anyway — and we got some major additions to chemistry,
geology, physics, engineering, mathematics. But these two
were very high priority: the arts and the medical school--
or the health sciences, really, which is medicine, dentistry,
nursing, public health, and the hospital.
Anyway, back to the arts. One of my failures, I'll
mention very quickly. It, to me, is a tragic and a classic
example of this nonsense between writing about an art or
doing it. One day I had a phone call, within two or three
years after I'd come. I'd met Jascha Heifetz through
mutual friends. And Jascha said he wanted to come see me,
and he said that he and Gregor Piatigorsky and William
Primrose (and here were the three preeminent string players
in the world on the three different instruments — the violin,
the viola, and the cello) , that Bill Primrose was going to
come to California to live (Grischa and Jascha were already
here), and they were going to do a lot of trio, quartet
music. And would UCLA be interested in their teaching
master classes, coming on the faculty? Well, now, here
you had laid out on a platter three of the giants in this
field. So I jumped with joy. I said, "Jascha, no problem.
I'll be back to you quickly."
I promptly got hold of Melnitz, who was very excited,
and then we got the music people in. And you will not
believe it, but to a man they said, no. No, these are not
musicologists. These are not historians of music. They
haven't written any papers. The problem was, unfortunately,
with a few exceptions, many of the members of the music
department were scholars, not professional musicians. That's
why they were in the university. And this was a defensive
thing; this is the insecurity of the inadequate.
Well, I was fresh and young here at the time and still
feeling my way through the Academic Senate process, the
appointment process. But we pulled and hauled and twisted,
and I finally got extension. Abbott Kaplan, needless to say,
was enthusiastic about the idea. But then the courses had
to be credited by the Academic Senate, and the music depart-
ment dissented; and to make a long story short, these three
people, I finally had to say we just couldn't fit them in.
And they went down to USC. Gifted students of the strings
come from all over the United States and the world to work
on a selective basis with Jascha and Grischa. Bill Primrose
has subsequently died. But it's this kind of nonsense and
this kind of sophistry and this kind of defensiveness that
has created problems for we administrators who are determined
to see that the practice of the arts have a proper role in
university curriculum. So that was one abject failure,
and it illustrates the problem.
Now, going beyond this, then, a little bit, you've
got the building program going, and I was determined. I
felt that we ought to build out on the West Coast a dis-
tinguished department of art history. Berkeley has a good
one. At that time, Stanford had nothing. Subsequently
Stanford has build a very fine Department of Art History.
But really west of Chicago there was nothing of distinction.
All on the East Coast: Columbia Institute of Fine Arts,
the Fogg Museum at Harvard, Yale, Princeton, University of
Chicago. Well, in order to attract good art historians
you have to have a distinguished art history library. So
we set about to build that section. And I scouted around,
got a lot of money--more money than I thought I could. I
also convinced my friend Bob Goheen of Princeton to let us
have one of the few copies of the Index of Christian Art,
which is an indispensable tool for the art historian, as
well as for other scholars of that period in other fields.
We put a lot of money in the slide collection, the photo-
graphic collection, to build up these scholarly resources
to peimit.us. We had practically nothing in this area to
begin with. We do now have, I think, one of the best sort
of archival bibliographic resources in the West for the
young art historian or the older one. But unfortunately,
I didn't get very far in building the quality of the depart-
ment. It's still an average department. It ought to be a
distinguished department. And here again I was stymied, I
think, by the existence within that department of some very
pedestrian people who were defensive, insecure, and really
stymied Bill and me in getting the people to come. But the
base is there, and I think Charles Speroni understands this
now. There 've been some fortunate retirements in that depart-
ment, and there'll be some highly fortunate ones in the very
near future, and they now have a chance to really build some
distinction within their department. I'm at least pleased
that the physical resources are there and the library and
the archival resources are there.
In theater, the program has always been good. It still
isn't quite as professional as it ought to be, but [Kenneth]
Macgowan was an extraordinary man, a combination scholar,
writer, and director. Remember, he'd worked with O'Neill
and also worked in the motion picture industry but was a
very gifted writer. Some of the books he and Melnitz did
are classics in history of the theater. They have a phys-
ical resource, I think, second to none to lay on good pro-
gramming; and here again it's just a question of getting
the faculty to understand that you've got to have a couple
of truly distinguished professionals, and then the thing
goes--like [George Pierce] Baker at Harvard at one time.
Television and radio, we really were on the way to
building a truly distinguished program, and I think it's
still a very good program, with Colin Young who was recruited
away just in my last year by the British government; and in
fact, the reason he went back was that the government
mandated him to build a film school in London, or just
outside of London, for all of Great Britain. That program
is spotty, but by and large it's certainly one of the two
or three best in the country. And I think it retains that
quality. We tried to help that. We got a lot of resources,
foundation grants — the Louis B. Mayer Foundation was very
generous — and federal grants of consequence. Again, they've
got superlative quarters, and it's just a question of
agreeing to get good people and continuing to build.
In the practice of the arts, the practicing arts,
that faculty has grown, I think. A giant step forward
was when we were able to recruit Richard Diebenkorn. And
here again, you have this old problem of the senate mechan-
ism and def ensiveness . Fred Wight was successful in getting
Dick to come down here from the north. Diebenkorn is cer-
tainly one of the half-dozen most distinguished practicing
painters in America today, so recognized. But I have to
tell you frankly that Dick either has resigned or is going
to resign, because he told his colleagues that he'd do all
the teaching he was supposed to, he liked teaching this and
that, but he didn't want to do administration. He was a
painter, a teacher. Well, his colleagues, who obviously
are jealous of him, because none of them have ever come
close to him in stature, told him — at least, certain of
them — that he had to do this. Everybody rotated in this
administration. Dick said, "Well, if that's the choice,
I'm going to stay in Venice "--or Santa Monica or wherever
it is — "and paint." So again, it's the problem of how do
you get and keep gifted people, even when you've got the
physical resources for them.
I guess the next thing I'd take note of was our deter-
mination when we were planning this North Campus area mainly
for the fine arts, I did want to make a rather beautiful
area out of it. All my life in academia, I've believed
that a university campus ought to be a good deal more than
just efficient and functional, that it ought to have beauty
in it; because I think that young people should be encouraged
to grow up in the presence of beauty, to think of art as
something you live with rather than something you just look
at. And when I was at Kansas, I had engaged in a program of
building a few fountains here and there and putting some
sculpture around the campus, and I conceived that this was
really a superlative opportunity.
So I got together with Ralph Cornell and our landscape
architects and explained what it was I wanted — namely, a
sculpture garden, mainly on the grass but also flowing into
the brick in the plaza of the art building, really flowing
the other way. And they said, "Well, what sculptures?"
And I said, "I have none, but forget about that. My
responsibility is to find the sculptures; you design an
area where we will put the sculpture." Well, you know,
we had to guess. There 'd be some monumental pieces, some
smaller pieces, middle-sized pieces.
About that time, when we were engaging in this dialogue,
Fred Wight and the UCLA Art Council laid on that great
Lipchitz show. (I guess it was the first major Lipchitz
show that had ever been held.) And of course the major
piece in it was the Song of the Vowels . And Lillian Weiner,
who was very active in the Art Council then — and still is,
for that matter; a close friend of Norton Simon and Lucille
Simon, to whom Norton was then married — heard me talking
about this one day, and she said, "Franklin, why don't we
get the Song of the Vowels ?" I think the cost of that piece
then was $90,000, Today, I don't know — $300,000. I said,
"That's great, but where do we find the money?" She said,
"Let me talk to Norton." So again, to make that long story
short, the Simons gave half the money, and the Art Council
put up the balance. So we had the first piece. And we knew
where that would go, because of its monumentality and the
rest of it. But here were many places, areas--now that the
design was going forward--for so many pieces of sculpture.
Then happened one of those extraordinary things which
is tragic but also fortunate, depending upon what side of
the coin you examine. There was at that time living in Los
Angeles, in Holmby Hills, a very competent, capable busi-
nessman called David Bright, who had made a great deal of
money in the cable television business. He was a great
collector, great eye, great enthusiasm. And his great
Holmby Hills estate was just filled with sculpture. Very
important pieces. He was a member of the Art Council at
UCLA, also on the board of the L.A. County Museum of Art.
He told me en passant that he had in his will — now, he was
a young man in his fifties, so we thought we were talking
about thirty years from now--that he had willed a certain
proportion of his paintings to UCLA, a certain proportion
to the L.A. County Museum of Art, and the balance of his
art to his widow, and then there were pieces that were joint
property of both of them. The widow was Dolly Bright — I
mean, his wife. Well, as I say, tragically he died suddenly,
just about the time this garden was ready to come on-stream;
it was in construction.
So here we were, needing lots of sculpture, having
been willed an important collection of paintings, and with
his widow not wishing to live in this great big estate. So
logic prevailed. I sat down with her, and I said, "Look,
Dolly, we have paintings, you have the sculpture. Let's
trade them, because you can put the paintings no matter
where you live, an apartment or what." Great idea, as far
as she was concerned. We got appraisals so everything was
very legal, and I got the regents to agree to this trade.
Overnight we had ten very important pieces of sculpture:
the Lipchitz cubist period. The Bather , the Calder, the
Chadwick, the Barbara Hepworth, etc., etc., and of course
the great Henry Moore. Well, what was it Andy Hamilton
said? "The Lord protects or looks over sculpture-ridden
chancellors," or something of that sort. At that point
we had a critical mass, and of course since then pieces
have come, as in fact I knew they would once you get the
magnet. And I'm prejudiced, obviously, but others tell me
who are, I think, objective that they regard this as one
of the most beautiful sculpture gardens in the United States,
if not anywhere in the world. And the reason I think they
do is that it's laid about so people live with it.
There was a group from the East out the other day and
wanted to see it. Mrs. Murphy and I went out with them and
had a little tea and showed them around. They were commenting
on this, because the students were there studying and leaning
against them and all the rest of it, and the point was that
this was unlike the sculpture garden in the Museum of Modern
Art where people have to go into the building and go by
guards and then go out in a cluttered area. But it was a
place where people lived.
I said, yes, that the greatest compliment and the
greatest thrill I'd ever gotten out of the garden was when
a few years ago, after I'd left UCLA, I ran into a young
couple at the Music Center, at some performance. They came
up to me and said, "Dr. Murphy, we're So-and-so. We were
at UCLA when you were there, subsequently married." And I
said, "Well, that's fine," and so forth. They kind of looked
at each other and smiled, and then the girl, the young woman,
turned to me, and she said, "We'd like to tell you something.
Our first child was conceived in your sculpture garden."
And I said, "My dear, that's the nicest thing I've ever
heard." Because that's what it's for: it is to live in
and with and so forth. Well, that of course takes care of
that part of the thing.
I guess finally we can talk about the ethnic arts,
that is to say, what some people call "primitive art. "
I think that's an awful term. It's actually highly soph-
isticated art. The proper term, I guess, is an explanatory
one. It should be called the "highly sophisticated art of
technologically primitive people." But in any event, I have
long, as you can see, personally been interested in the art
of technologically primitive people, whether it be Africa
or pre-Columbian America or Oceania, because in many ways,
to me it's the most honest art. It's art created for a
purpose — although that used to be true of Western art.
After all, the frescoes painted in the early Renaissance
for the church were there to teach illiterate people the
story of the Bible. So it was a functional art even then.
But in these latter years, as I, like everybody else, began
to puzzle a little bit as to how you explain to Africans
who by way of slavery had been chopped off from their
cultural roots, or the Mexican-Americans here in the South-
west who really again, in a sense, were chopped off from
their [roots] , how do you explain to these people that they
have a right to cultural self-confidence just as much as
an Italian or a German or a Frenchman. And of course, it
is their art, it has always seemed to me . I therefore
wanted early on to create a program at UCLA in the ethnic
arts. I felt that no university had really done it well,
and that it was overdue. After all, the world is getting
a lot smaller; people are exploring in a much more intimate,
in-depth way the very different cultures of other people.
And in my view, the best way to get to the cultural commit-
ment of the people is through their art — music, sculpture,
painting, dance--depending upon the culture.
Well, I began talking about this at UCLA and discovered
that nobody was interested in it. The art department were
only interested in Western art, maybe the art of China and
South Asia. The people there didn't regard this as art;
they regarded it as artifacts. They said, "That belongs
to the anthropologist." So I go in to the anthropologists,
and they said, "Oh, that's the nineteenth-century material
culture of the Germans. We're much more advanced now.
We're talking about the psychology of the natives and
the Freudian approach to examining matrilineal things."
So the anthropologists regarded them as tools; the art
historians regarded them as primitive scribbling.
So what do you do if you're determined to do something
about it? Well, I decided to bring in somebody, and I found
Ralph Altman. Well, Ralph had one great problem: he didn't
have the PhD degree. So I had to sort of smuggle him into
the university. Anthropology didn't want him because he
didn't have the PhD degree; the art historians didn't want
him because he didn't have the PhD degree in that field,
except that he just happened to know more about primitive art
than ten PhD's. And he was, above everything else, a
cultivated human being.
(You know, that's one interesting thing I've discovered.
And that is, that the one thing — there are many things, but
certainly one thing the PhD does not give anybody, and
that is cultivation. I've seen some of the most uncul-
tivated boors who had the PhD, and some of the most cultivated,
gifted, stimulating, creative people who never had the PhD
degree. It's one of the curses of the university that that
badge has to be so often required for creative, stimulating
teaching or research. )
Whfen Ralph came, there wasn't even an office for him,
and there was no budget, there was no money. So we just
carved it out. And with his energy and his commitment
and loyalty and dedication, and with my ability to find
a few dollars here and there, and — if I may use a word so
bold — my power to tell people to clear out the basement
of one of the buildings, we got something started.
MINK: You did have on the music side the beginnings of
the Institute of Ethnomusicology with Mantle Hood, though.
MURPHY: Yes, I was going to come to that. Mantle was
already here, but Mantle never really got involved in this
thing of Ralph's. To him even though many of his musical
instr\iments were works of art, he didn't really care; he
didn't want his materials commingled. They were musical
instruments. Again, this is the stupidity of these classical
boundaries. I don't know whether you should talk about a
Renaissance man, but at least you ought to talk about a flex-
ible man, who's not possessive and who says, "Sure, I use
it, but you use it, too," because these things serve many
purposes in different cultures.
Well, by main force, and Ralph's energy and knowledge
and connections and commitments, we got a show on the road.
Objects, very few, dribbling in, and then all of a sudden
a remarkable development. There was here at that time —
one of the great losses to UCLA was his death — Professor
[CD.] O'Malley, who was a professor of the history of
medicine, a truly cultivated human being, a very distin-
guished medical historian. O'Malley was an Englishman,
a Scotsman, I think. He had very close connections with
the Wellcome Medical History Institute and Library in London,
which had been established by Sir Henry Wellcome. One day
he called me and said that he had learned that the trustees
of the Wellcome Foundation had decided to let go of all the
art collections that Sir Henry Wellcome had brought together
and simply concentrate on the library of medical history
and the museum of the history of pharmacy. Henry Wellcome
was the founder of Burroughs and Wellcome, the world-wide
British pharmaceutical company.
If we have a minute, I'll tell you an interesting
aside. He was a very strange man, Henry Wellcome; I never
knew him, of course. An interesting footnote: Sir Henry
Wellcome was born in Minnesota of English parentage. And
as a boy, his parents went back, and he went back with them.
He grew up. in London. He started working in a little apothe-
cary shop and gradually made his own things and built this
company. He married a woman called Surrey, and this woman
divorced him to marry Somerset Maugham. And she was the
mother of the Maugham girl who sued her father, you remember,
a while back, creating a great crisis. You remember, Somerset
Maugham married this woman, and they lived together for a
while, and then Somerset Maugham decided to live with his
male secretary for the rest of his life rather than with
his wife; and in fact, he spent the rest of his life trying
to autohypnotize himself into believing that he was never
married to a woman. This is why he denied the parentage
of this one daughter.
Well, the loss of his wife made such a misogynist
out of Henry Wellcome that he simply never looked at
another woman again. He never married, lived in a great
big house in London, and devoted his entire life to his
company and collecting. Now, he had agents out all over
the world, at the time when Britain ran the world. And so
crates and boxes of African art, Northwest-Coast Indian
art, the art of Melanesia — they had great coconut plantations
in the Pacific where they got coconut oil, this sort of
thing — he brought together a fantastic collection of primi-
tive art. He had also brought together a great collection
of Egyptology. He scoured the Middle East. A very dis-
tinguished collection. In the meantime, he made a great
collection, a library of medical history — it's one of the
finest in the world — and this extraordinary collection of
the history of pharmacy.
The Wellcome trustees thought they just couldn't keep
this all up, so they concentrated on the medical history,
created an institute out of it where scholars come and do
medical history and the history of pharmacy and so on. And
they were going to dispose of these collections. The
University of London agreed to accept the Egyptology
collection and built a building for it. It's one of
the finest small collections of Egyptology, Egyptian
art, to be found anywhere.
But what to do with the primitive collection? The
British Museum, as you know, still have in their basements,
these cavernous basements, crates that have the date 189 5
on them that have never been opened. This is an unbelievable
experience, to go through the basements of the British
Museum. They couldn't take additional materials. Oxford
and Cambridge were approached, said they'd love to have it
but didn't know what they'd do with it. They were very
diffident. I think they thought they'd get it anyway.
Well, Donald O'Malley was a close friend of the direc-
tor of the Wellcome Institute. To make a long story short,
on my next trip to London I went and met them. They got
very interested. Why California? Well, I said, "You know.
New York has their Nelson Rockefeller materials, London
has the British Museum. Here's the western part of a great
country like the United States. You do business all through
the United States. It's a logical home. We really want it.
The others might not." I thought we were whistling in the
dark, but to my amazement, I got a call from London one
day saying the trustees had met and voted to give it to us.
I couldn't believe it, but I got Ralph Altman on the
plane, told him to get over there. He was absolutely-
astonished, because he, too, was opening crates in ware-
houses that had never been opened.
Well, one of the exciting periods was that two-year
period, when month after month I got a call from Altman
saying the next shipment's arrived. We'd go down into
Haines Hall and open up the crates, and here were these
fabulous objects coming out. And so overnight, from having
relatively nothing, UCLA — and the West Coast, for that matter-
had one of the distinguished collections of primitive art
anywhere. And not a year's passed since, that private
collectors haven't given additional materials. We expanded
the program to include the folk arts, the ordinary arts of
everyday people of Mexico and South America; and the collec-
tions are so important now that if, down the road, the
senate and the faculty decided not to have an interest in
this, they,' d have no alternative. They've got to go forward.
The critical mass is built.
One thing I was unable to complete before I left the
university was to provide adequate housing for it, a Peabody-
type museum or a University of Pennsylvania- type museum.
But I guess it's no secret that I'm personally working
on that project now, and we think we have in sight an
angel or angels that, with some cooperation from the regents.
will permit us to build the kind of facility that would have,
research space; office, teaching, seminar space; and exhibit
space, for rolling exhibits in this material. As you know,
we have had exhibits on campus, bits and pieces of the col-
lection from time to time, and will continue to, in the
enlarged new Fred[erick S.] Wight [Art] Galleries that are
just going to open in January. In fact, they're going to open
with an African show, as you know, after a Wight show.
But that's, to me, been a very exciting development.
I think it hasn't been exploited by the university, not
yet, because I think what you have there in the basement
of Royce Hall and elsewhere is the cultural heritage of
cultures which in sum total make up many, many millions
living in this world, and whose descendants who live in
this country have the opportunity to develop some kind of
Well, I could go on, but I think that in my own view,
I didn't get done in the arts nearly as much as I wanted to.
I got done a good deal, I think, and even though I'm no
longer officially connected with the university, I'm sort
of an unofficial — I won't say adviser — generator of extra-
mural money to continue this development.
MINK: In the area of the School of Architecture and Urban
Planning, you did have a hand in that, I know, and I thought
maybe you might like to speak about that for a minute, too.
MURPHY: During my tenure, we created four new schools,
actually; a School of Dentistry, a College of Fine Arts,
a School of Public Health — it was a department when I came,
a department of the Berkeley school, believe it or not,
another example of that nonsense that we talked about
earlier (we created our own School of Public Health, which
incidentally has developed great distinction around the
country ) --and then the College of Architecture and Urban
Planning, I think we called it. Well, this was done on
the grounds that there needed to be within the system at
least one more. There had always been one at Berkeley.
MINK: This was done in spite of the fact that USC has
always maintained a school?
MURPHY: Oh, it ' s a very fine school.
MINK: But it was felt that there was sufficient need?
MURPHY: Yes, sir. Sufficient need, and that we had on
campus, in a variety of other departments, resources that
could be highly supportive of this new college. But here
we had one hell of a time, again, with this professional
versus the fellow that does iambic pentameter. And we
really maybe had more problems here than we almost had any
other place, because we were not creating, as I had to over
and over again explain to the senate and budget committees,
a department of the history of architecture. We needed prac-
ticing architects, fellows who knew how to teach other people
to build and design a building that wouldn't fall down.
I got George Dudley, who was a very capable guy, from
Rensselaer Polytechnic [Institute]. George came out,
and really, in the two or three years that he had in trying
to recruit and get people through the budget committee and
this sort of thing, it finally just took the heart out of
MINK: It's really what turned him off and made him leave,
MURPHY: No question about it. It just cut his heart out.
He said, "My God, how can you build this kind of thing?"
And he'd get angry, and I think justifiably so. "Why has
some professor of English literature got the authority to
tell me as a member of the budget committee that he doesn't
think this fellow is a good architect? What does he know
about it?" But anyway, George made progress, and George did
creative, broad design, including a very important commit-
ment to urban development, urban planning.
MINK: That was the real difference in our school vis-a-vis
Berkeley and USC, that we were going to add this other ele-
MURPHY: That is correct. It's important because this is
an element that everybody was increasingly interested in.
MINK: Los Angeles was a fine laboratory for this.
MURPHY: A great laboratory. And parenthetically, that
was one of the reasons we were able to attract some people,
in spite of the budget committee nonsense in this regard.
Well, he left, and I think we were very fortunate in getting
his successor. George had really sort of broken the ice.
By the time George left, we'd pounded the budget committee
often enough; and I'd gotten more authority, as I explained
earlier, back from Berkeley to make some final decisions
down here overruling people without worrying about them.
So that by the time the new man came, we were able to move
on appointments with a good deal more vigor and also make
arrangements for part-time practice, which the purists....
You know, I'll never forget when some fellow from one of
the humanities said to me, "Well, why do you say that an
architect can practice outside and earn money as well as
teach? Why not me?" I said, "Did I ever tell you that you
couldn't write a book that somebody would want to buy?
If you're up to writing a book on your own time, in addition
to your teaching — I don't care what it is, a Mickey Spillane
novel or whatever — I never told you you couldn't go to a
publisher and get it published and keep the money."
TAPE NUMBER: V, Side 2
DECEMBER 6, 1973
MURPHY: There's this kind of an element in this whole
thing. There's sort of a jealousy between the purists
and the professional schools and the like. In any event,
I think that school is on its way.
MINK: I think so.
MURPHY: But boy, bringing a professional school to birth
is especially hard in the University of California. Harvard
never had this problem. Harvard doesn't have a budget
committee system, where the liberal arts people decide
what the Harvard Business School is going to do or the
Harvard Law School is going to do. This university system
was in the grip of the liberal arts faculty — like this,
[gestures] Bob Sproul gave it to them. It was the deal
when he became president. And that's why the professional
schools in the California system have really lagged behind
their counterparts in the East. There's been a medical
school in San Francisco for a long time as part of the
University of California, never a distinguished school
as compared to Harvard, [Johns] Hopkins, etc., etc. Boalt
Hall really never achieved the distinction, until more
recently, that Yale and Harvard and Columbia or Chicago
have. Engineering schools — my God! no comparison in terms
of MIT, and Cornell, Caltech and so on. The business
school, same situation: the Harvard Business School,
Columbia Business School, the Chicago School of Business.
And it was this grip that the liberal arts faculty had,
with the full support of Sproul and Kerr, on the life of
the university that did it. And it was only broken when
the regents themselves, at the behest of some of us, simply
explained to the then president that they wanted this
stopped. I'm told by Chuck that although there are prob-
lems in this regard, they're infinitely less than they
were ten years ago.
DECEMBER 26, 19 73
MINK: I was wondering if you would discuss, just for a
while this afternoon, your involvement with the library.
Now, just at the time that you came, we got a new university
librarian. Bob Vosper. I wonder if you could more or less
relate how this happened that you and he came together.
MURPHY: Well, I guess it's fairly well understood that
I've always been interested in libraries wherever I've been.
I guess that's because I grew up with a bibliophilic father.
I became a sort of a book collector at a very early age
myself. But over and beyond just the love of books and
book collecting and this kind of thing, I've always felt
that in a very real way the quality of the library is a
measure of the quality, the intellectual quality, of the
institution. Curious scholars need books, especially in
the humanities and the social sciences, and if the books
are unavailable, you don't get the scholars. It's a kind
of a deep interrelationship.
So when I went to the University of Kansas as chan-
cellor, I found a library situation that was most unsatis-
factory. There was a very old, tired chap who'd been
director of libraries for thirty years. He was unfortunately
one of those librarians who dislike books. They represented
a chore or a problem. He retired, happily, was scheduled
for retirement within a year or two after I came, and I
put together a committee to seek out his successor. The
chairman of that committee was the head of the English
department, Jim Wortham. Jim had been at UCLA in the
English department, and he remembered Bob Vosper as an
energetic, delightful human being, very knowledgeable
about libraries and with a real love of books. So in the
end, the committee came up with Vesper's name, and then I
had the problem of convincing Bob to leave UCLA, leave
Larry Powell, leave a very happy environment, to come to
Kansas in a rather austere environment and with a very bad
library situation. But I think the charm of the Lawrence
campus plus my sense of commitment convinced Bob that this
was an opportunity for him to go on his own. So then
began this relationship which continued over many years.
We had a very exciting time at Kansas. I found the
money, both public and private, and Bob managed to build
a really extraordinary, active and gifted staff, many of
whom have gone on to the senior positions since; and we had
enormous fun in getting real vitality back into the library
I might add that one of my gambits in attempting to
convince Bob to come to Lawrence from UCLA in the beginning
was, of course, my comment that Lawrence was a beautiful
little hill town in eastern Kansas with pure air and
none of the smog and none of the tension and excitement.
And now I leave Lawrence to go to Los Angeles. And inci-
dentally, the year I left. Bob was on sabbatical in Italy.
I remember the painful — because we had developed not just
a professional but a very personal relationship--problem
I had of writing him and telling him that I was leaving.
When I got to Los Angeles — I had known Larry Powell,
and of course I consider Larry one of the really gifted
men in the whole history of library science in this country-
I discovered that Larry was near retirement; at least, he
wanted to get out of managing the library to become dean of
a new school of library science. That was about it. He
really wasn't retiring from the university. So within a
year or two, I had the problem of replacing Larry. And
needless to say, I really wanted to get Bob. I finally
sort of had to clear it with ray successor at Kansas. I
think he was not surprised when I called him and told him
that I wanted Bob, because he knew how close Bob and I were.
Then I dealt with Bob, really, by mail. I didn't have to
have him come to UCLA; he knew it very well. And to make
a long story short, it was like Bob coming back home, but
as boss this time.
And here again, we made a commitment — several commit-
ments. I go back to the old Berkeley problem. Berkeley
had repeatedly had the advantage over UCLA in library money.
Furthermore, all of the exchange material that the University
Press got for their journals that they published all auto-
matically went into the Berkeley library. This was a hidden
subsidy to Berkeley.
So my first job was to get Bob. That was fairly easy.
My second job was to get the money to build the new research
library, the first unit. This was a little more difficult.
But we got it pushed up on the agenda. I remember we had
great difficulties with the Berkeley people, though; they
wanted a smaller building than Larry and I knew we had to
have. We finally had to get the ex-librarian at Harvard
out here as a consultant to convince the people in Berkeley
that what we had talked about was reasonable. The money
for this was acquired; we, happily, were able to hire
Quincy Jones to do the building; and I think that research
library is one of the most attractive buildings on the whole
campus. Quincy did a superb job. The third problem was
much the more difficult, and that was the effort to get
parity with Berkeley. And here, again, we had to almost —
not almost, we had to go the regents route again.
MINK: You actually had to go to the regents?
MURPHY: Privately. As I said in one of these earlier
tapes, I'm, in retrospect, never happy about the fact that
I had to go out of channels so often. I never wanted to.
But this Berkeley favoritism was so rampant that channels
wouldn't work on anything.
MINK: I ' d be curious to know, which regents were most
responsive to library needs?
MURPHY: Well, again, regents such as Ed Carter, Ed Pauley,
John Canaday, Bill Forbes, Dorothy Chandler — all of them.
They understood this instinctively. They're all bright
and intelligent people. But always there was this element
when I had to go to the regents, whether it was on dormitory
or housing or union building or whatever, to get parity
with Berkeley. Always there was this element of the unfair-
ness of not having parity on any issue.
Well, we finally got an agreement out of the statewide
administration, as a result of regents pressure. So we
were on our way. And I think it's fair to say in retro-
spect that those nine years that Bob and I had together —
again, my getting the money and the resources and Bob
building the staff and developing this very sophisticated
acquisitions program — were really very satisfying years
for me and for Bob, and I think they were sort of golden
years for the UCLA library. I think the UCLA library is
now one of the better university libraries in the country.
It should be. It's a resource for Southern California as
well as for the university.
I understand my successor, Chancellor Young, however,
has to continue to scrutinize the situation on this parity
business. It tends to slip from time to time. But my con-
viction is that as long as the statewide administration
sits in Berkeley, California, UCLA is always going to have
to be looking over the shoulder. It's a bad situation.
And parenthetically, I should say that I, for years, have
taken a position, and communicated to the regents, that the
healthiest thing they could do is to move the statewide
administration out of Berkeley. Until they do that, there
will always be this problem.
MINK: That's what Jerry Byrne recommended in his report.
MURPHY: Of course, he did. And any logical person looking
at it objectively knows that's what should be done.
MINK: Tell me, in this matter of parity, did this come in
what I recall was a period of the enjoying of large lump
sums of regents' opportunity money, chancellors' contingency
money. I think that decade when you were chancellor probably
brought that bulk money in greater amounts to the library
than ever before. I wondered if this was the way in which
the parity was balanced off.
MURPHY: Well, this was a curious thing. You put your
finger on what continues, I think, to be a small but nagging
problem for Chancellor Young. There was a basic reluctance
on the part of the statewide administration to get the annual
operating funds on a parity.
MINK: That's what I was wondering, yes.
MURPHY: So what they did was to go to the regents and
say, "Okay, we can't cut Berkeley back to equalize it, so
you've got to give us your funds." These could not be
regarded as continuing funds. They were continuing, in
that it happened every year for a number of those years.
But they provided a spurt, if you will, to get the collec-
tions closer to parity. And I don't know the details, it's
been five years, but I always said that until the annual
state appropriated budgets for books were equalized, you
could never say there was parity. What that situation is
now, I don't know. I must say that I think, however, in
terms of private funds and use of campus funds that we had
control over, we finally got control over, like the Connell
money. .. • I think I mentioned earlier that when I came,
that Connell money, although it was given to UCLA, was
controlled by Berkeley. One of the first things we did
was to tear that away. It wasn't a lot of money--! think
about a couple hundred thousand a year--but that was a
crucial couple of hundred thousand a year. However, I
don't know, you know, how you could ever measure perfect
parity. But I must say, I think we're much closer to it
than we used to be.
MINK: I think we certainly are.
MURPHY: And I think the library has shown it in terms of
the growth of its collections, the quality of the collections,
the depth of the collections.
MINK: Was it ever your intention that, if at all possible,
the University Research Library should have been built in
one single. . . ?
MURPHY: I fought to have it built.... Well, let me go
back a little bit. When we proved that we needed this
additional library structure, I had hoped we could build
it in two pieces, two bites. The Berkeley crowd started
on a four-bite basis. And the way it really wound up is
that it's a three-bite basis.
MINK: The unfortunate thing — just in commenting — is that
it's made it so much more expensive to build.
MURPHY: Precisely. This was our point, that you can do
it much more cheaply. But, again, those are battles
that are better forgotten. At least we've got a rather
distinguished building there, and it's only got one more
piece to go.
MINK: Turning now to the student unrest, the whole matter
of the fruition of student unrest, if you want to put it
that way. The real battle, demonstrations didn't occur
until after you'd left, but did you begin to detect this
during your administration?
MURPHY: Oh, yes. We had some problems during my time,
because of course the [Mario] Savio, the Free Speech
Movement, so-called, had started at Berkeley. There 'd
been a lot of trouble up there, and troubles had started
on the Stanford campus and around the country. So we had
some real problems when I was here. We had the SDS group
trying to block up the Placement Center. We had the Dow
Chemical Company difficulties, broken windows, and we had to
use the campus police several times. I had the big sit-in
in the Administration Building where we did bring police
on campus. We asked them not to do anything, and the
youngsters did leave the building. You will recall that
we had some sort of mass meetings, and people demanded
to see me; and for a period of time, I'd go to the union
building once a week and sit down with a group of militant
students and let them tell me how bad society was and the
university was and I was. So we had that kind of diffi-
Also, we began to have the militancy of the Chicano
students and the black students, because there was a lot
of militancy going on at that time. There was the anti-
Vietnam [War] militancy. There was the Free Speech mili-
tancy: we ought to be able to do what we want when we
want. Then the blacks were coming on strong, and they had
their special kind of militancy — black studies, rights for
the blacks. And the Chicanes came along. I had that epi-
sode when one of the fraternities that traditionally had
a party put up signs in the front of their building. And
the Chicano students felt that these signs were very demean-
ing to the Mexican tradition, and they threatened to break
down, burn down the fraternity, bring the university to a
screaming halt — things like that.
But you may recall that we took a pretty strong posi-
tion, and it was based on a three-point sort of platform.
The platform said: One, that we believed in the freedom
of expression without fear of retribution; we could protect
that. Two, that we would protect the right of privacy.
Just because one man has the right to speak is not the
guarantee that he has a captive audience. Another man must
have the right not to want to listen and not to have to
listen. That's why we had this time, place, and manner
set of rules. And then, thirdly, we said that nobody--
and that meant nobody--had the right to interfere with the
normal conduct of the business of the university. We had
a number of disciplinary hearings; we had some suspension
of students; we had — fortunately, as I think it's the case--
to bring the police on campus only once and that was the
sit-in in the Administration Building.
MINK: Was that the campus police? That wasn't the LT^D?
MURPHY: No, I had the LAPD in. And we put them in the
basement, and the students were sitting in on the third
floor. And we told them that unless they got out by five-
thirty, they would be interfering with the normal conduct
of the business of the university. The key to it, in ray
view, was that they knew the LAPD was in the basement.
And by five-thirty, they had gotten out; so the police
filed out and we had no further difficulty.
But I will admit that the combination of the struggle
to get parity across the board with the Berkeley campus,
the pressures that normally bear on a person who's chancellor
or president of a university having done this for twenty
years, I would say then that the extra effort, which involved
literally hours of talking with and listening to these instant
wisdom- type — the student arrogants, I guess you'd call them —
undoubtedly played a role in my finally deciding that I
wasn't young enough. You needed a younger man to take this
kind of pressure. And I'd been doing it for some twenty-
MINK: You know, it was originally planned, as I understood
it, when home economics was moved out, that the School of
Public Health would have its new building.
MINK: That was to be part of the humanities complex, and
in fact it was even named after Lily Bess Campbell.
MURPHY: That's right.
MINK: But then, was this one way in which you were able,
by giving into the blacks and the Chicanes and the Indians,
to provide a center or place for them on campus?
MURPHY: That was done after I left.
MINK: Was that done after you left?
MURPHY: Absolutely. I had, and I still have, very grave
questions as to these black studies programs, Indian study
programs, Chicano studies programs. I think they're devoid
of much intellectual content. I think it was psychotherapy
rather than intellectual activity. But I'm not going to
second-guess anybody, because maybe some psychotherapy was
needed to quiet people down. I think it's a miscarriage of
space and everything else, on a campus that's very short on
space, to provide a sort of social meeting room for these
people. I must say, I'm glad to see that the more intelli-
gent and thoughtful blacks around the country are now admitting
that these black studies programs were really nothing
much more than buying some time and interest. The history
of the black in this country and the history of the Chicano
in this country ought to be an integral part of history.
And any department of history with integrity will put it
in. And they'd even have a separate course. But to create
these so-called centers is, I think, really quite absurd.
MINK: So if you had been there, you would have vetoed this.
MURPHY: Well, let's put it this way: Who knows? You know,
Monday-morning quarterbacking is easy. If I'd been there
and I'd felt that the situation called for some kind of
psychotherapy, I think I would have involved myself in it.
I just don't know because I wasn't there then. I was not
there during the Angela Davis difficulty. That happened,
I think, a year or two after I'd left. But I am rather
pleased, looking back — even though it was totally exhausting —
that we did engage in conversations in different quarters
of the campus and with the faculty and with militant students
to the extent that we prevented any fire.
MINK: In this, you took a leaf from the Berkeley situation.
MURPHY: They communicated by memo.
MINK: Or refused to communicate.
MURPHY: Yes, or refused to communicate. And then, of course,
I think anybody deserves the dignity of a response, even to
a demand. Now we turned down many of these so-called demands.
They were impossible. But at the same time, they had a
MINK: Were you ever asked by the Berkeley people how you
managed to keep the lid on?
MURPHY: Yes. Very often. And all I could say was what
we were doing. In all fairness to Berkeley, I think Stanford
is, perhaps, a better example. But maybe that's not true,
either. As you know, everybody thinks of Berkeley, but I
think probably as many or more acts of vandalism and real
violence occurred on the Stanford campus as occurred at
Berkeley. But in all fairness to both of those places,
much of that difficulty was as a result of nonstudents,
hangers-on around the campus or mixed-up high-school students
who wanted some kind of excitement. One of the big problems
from the very beginning at Berkeley has been the horrible
state of the society around the campus. We never had that
at UCLA, and to that extent we had a great advantage. I
always said it wasn't quite fair to compare the two situations.
I can't take credit for the environs of the UCLA campus.
MINK: One of the points that was often made about you per-
sonally in relation to the students was that you didn't like
to address a lot of them as a group, that you would lose
your temper, so you would send Chuck instead.
MURPHY: Well, toward the end that happened, yes. This is
when I began to sense that I wasn't very good for this kind
of thing. I remember one time, the thing that really,
I think, made me seriously consider whether I wasn't
really getting a little fatigued was this Chicano thing,
where these arrogant kids--I agreed to meet with them.
I agreed to meet with ten of them, and thirty of them
crowded into this room. All their own scholarships,
money that I'd personally gone out to get from government
and other agencies, being given a first-rate education —
snarling, spitting, making demands; and I did lose my
temper. And I finally got up and stomped out. I said,
you know, "Vice-Chancellor Young will deal with this matter
from this point on."
And I went back to my office and I said, "Look, you're
obviously losing your patience; you're obviously fatigued."
You know, it was battle fatigue. That was before, of course
I'd been offered the Times-Mirror job. But it began making
me think that after twenty years maybe I ought to try some-
MINK: Let's take up the matter of athletics during your
administration. What did you think of the athletic setup
as you saw it when you came?
MURPHY: Well, I frankly was a little disappointed, for a
number of reasons. Number one, there was a kind of, to
me, depressing attitude surrounding athletics. Wilbur
Johns was the athletic director, a very nice and loyal
man, but Wilbur had been there too long. And he was
the product of those older days when there was a lot of
chicanery and a lot of nonsense going on. Secondly, the
department itself was very inefficient from the business-
management side. It also seemed to me that alumni groups
were running Wilbur rather than vice versa. Thirdly, I
was very depressed about the fact that the athletic facil-
ities on campus were relatively nonexistent: no football,
no basketball arena, no track of consequence, no baseball
field. In short, everything had to be done off campus. And
yet this was a university activity. This was disappointing.
And finally, I was very disappointed at the lack of support
by the athletic department and interest in the so-called
minor sports: the swimming, crew, tennis, golf — you know,
this sort of thing. And my theory, ever since I'd been in
higher education, was that you shouldn't demean the athletic
program; you should broaden it to get more and more young-
sters involved in it.
Well, it was clear to me that a lot of things had to
be done, and a whole basic change in attitude had to occur
toward athletics at UCLA. And the more I thought about it,
the more I realized that everything really was related to
finding a new athletic director, the right fellow. I talked
to a lot of people. I personally felt that Wilbur had out-
lived his time, that we had to have new, fresh blood. Not
that he hadn't done well, but there had to be a new epoch.
I talked to many, many people, and Bill Ackerman was
the one who put me on to J.D. Morgan. The more I thought
about J.D. and I got to know him.... Here was a man who
was deeply interested in athletics--he was the tennis
coach — but he was in the business side of the university
and a good, tough, hard business mind. And the more we
talked, the more I realized that he had the interests I
had: broadening the base of athletics, building some
facilities on campus, getting the control of the program
back into the university rather than out on the alumni and
this fiction of the students running the program. About
that time also, the regents, you may recall, transferred
the management of athletics to the chancellor, where it
had been in the Associated Students — this curious fiction.
So all these things came together. I was given the respon-
sibility — rather than the ASUCLA — of the program.
MINK: Were you in any way responsible for this action of
the regents? Were you lobbying for it?
MURPHY: Yes, sir, I demanded it. I said, "This is a
nonsense." Incidentally, again I had problems with the
Berkeley campus on this. They said, "Oh, we're doing
beautifully," you know, and, "This ought to be with the
students. The students are running the program." And I
said, "That's the damnedest fiction I ever heard. Students
aren't running the program. Professional managers are
running it. If things go wrong, the chancellor gets the
blame; but he has no responsibility." And I must say that
Kerr was very supportive on this, right from the beginning.
And the regents got this done with a minimum of difficulty,
with only the Berkeley campus, not the statewide adminis-
tration, raising objections.
But as I say, all of these things came together. Then
we got the Memorial Activities Center program campaign going.
Tom and Phil Davis were central to that. And of course Ed
Pauley's gift, which John Canaday and Ed Carter and I got
Ed to commit to one night up at the old Claremont Hotel
in Berkeley. Since then, I think that the program has become
one of the most successful in the United States. It's a pro-
gram that is defensible; it's not done violence to the aca-
demic quality of the institution. And really, to summarize
it, if I'm to get any credit at all, it's my decision to
appoint J.D. Morgan, because J.D. is the one that's really
built the program. I think he's the best athletic director
MINK: Actually, did you really have quite a lot to do with
getting this before the regents?
MURPHY: You mean to get the control of athletics back in
to the chancellor?
MURPHY: Yes, sir, I did. I did a lot of lobbying.
MINK: How did you do that, just by lobbying with regents?
MURPHY: Absolutely. Well, I mean, these are businessmen,
these regents. This thing is a tradition going back to a
lot of Sproul nonsense years before, even [W.W. ] Campbell
nonsense. But when I could go to a Carter or a Pauley or
anybody else and say, "Look, how can you possibly manage
something, bear the responsibility, if you don't have the
authority?" They understood that quickly. As a matter of
fact, a lot of the regents didn't understand that. They
didn't know that the chancellor wasn't running the athletic
program. But I want to repeat, Clark Kerr was very supportive
right from the beginning. I had no problem with him at all,
nor he with me.
MINK: Turning from athletics, unless you have some further
comment to make about it. . .
MURPHY : No , no .
MINK: ...to the whole matter of public information, public
affairs. As I remember, before your administration, the
office was called the Office of Public Information. And
soon after that, there was a reorganization in this area,
reorganization not only in Public Affairs, but bringing into
that office the Office of Publications and all of this.
MURPHY: Well, the story there is, I think, a fairly simple
one. First of all, you know, a lot of these things that
I found when I came were, I think, not the fault of any
of my predecessors, but the fact that they had no authority
to do anything about their problems. Everything had to be
cleared with Berkeley. And the Berkeley people, the state-
wide people, would always say, "Well, if it's good enough
for the Berkeley campus, then it ought to be okay for UCLA."
So the first and most important thing in the resolution of
a lot of things--athletics; the thing that we're talking
about now, public information; and many other things--the
first and most important thing was to get the authority to
do what you had to do at the campus level. Now, having
gotten that authority, or increasing amounts of it year by
year, one of the things that was very clear to me was that
this big, sprawling campus, with different departments and
schools wanting to get out newsletters and this and that
and the other thing, that this thing had to be coordinated,
had to be pulled together. Furthermore, as you know, one
of my major commitments was to bring the university to the
Los Angeles community. This is their public university.
MINK: And publicity, of course, is an important factor.
MURPHY: Very important. And it had to be sophisticated.
It was not just grinding out press releases, but it was
a plan of telling the story of the university. Beyond that,
the statewide people were now into this bond issue thing,
and they depended heavily upon us, because if the bond
issue didn't carry in Southern California, that was the
end of it.
So all of these factors led to my pulling things out
of the various schools and out of different units on the
campus, pulling them all together into the Andy Hamilton
office. And this had to do, number one, with a public
information program — planned, organized, and developed.
Secondly, [we set up] a campus visitation program. After
all, the UCLA campus was becoming, and I think today has
become, one of the things that many people want to see —
nonstudents, people from abroad, and all other kinds of
people. So [we had] to organize this visitation program.
Thirdly was the publications program. It was a wastage of
money to have people sending out. ... I used to get calls
from people saying, "Look, I'm getting three copies of this
and seven copies of that. What's going on there? Who's
in charge?" So this had to be pulled together and organized.
And I think, in retrospect, Andy Hamilton did really a
superior job with his people. But it was sheer logic and
necessity that led to this. Anybody would have done it if
they'd just seen the situation. I can't recall; have we
discussed the growth of the fund raising and the Alumni
MINK: We talked about your fund raising and your special
efforts at fund raising, with what you call "creative fund
MURPHY: Yes, and the way this has finally gotten now
organized in the Chancellor's Associates. That was all
related to this, too, you know, because it was clear that
this campus was doing really only a fraction of its poten-
tial in generating financial resources out of public interest.
And so all of these things sort of got tied together. We
tried to revitalize, and I think successfully, the Alumni
Association and the fund-raising thing and tied that together
to Andy's operation — not directly under Andy, but sort of
guaranteeing a dialogue at the very top between the alumni
fellow (in that case, Doug Kinsey) and Andy. Chuck was my
administrative assistant. Chuck Young. We had these weekly
meetings where everybody knew what everybody else was trying
to do. I must say that I'm enormously pleased how success-
fully the fund-raising program has gone forward under Chuck
and Don Bowman.
MINK: You can really see it.
MURPHY: But back in those days when I came, it was prac-
tically nonexistent. I think I told you earlier the story
about the Alumni Association puzzling as to whether they
could pay a couple of thousand dollars for new draperies.
It's in one of the tapes, I remember.
MINK: I believe so.
MURPHY: The attitude was totally different. But it was a
part of that old inferiority. Sure, Berkeley does it,
but they're old and they're big and this and that. We can't
quite do it. I don't think you find that attitude. I
think our people now take the position that we don't know
what Berkeley's doing. That's their business. We do our
MINK: I think maybe the last question I ought to ask you
is: Looking back in retrospect, can you see anything that
you would have done differently now?
MURPHY: You know it sounds strange to say this, but looking
back, I don't think there's a single thing that I would have
done differently, because given the personalities involved,
given the history, the things that were done really had
to be done. And I can't think of any other way of doing
I have regrets. I regret that I had to spend so much
of my time in emotional energy on what I call "the Berkeley
battle." You know, most of those issues have been resolved
now. They could have been resolved right at the beginning.
UCLA is still quite as much a part of the University of
California system as it always was. The battles were unneces-
sary, but in view of the fact that there was intransigence
in the statewide administration, they had to be carried out.
If UCLA were today operating under the restrictions that
I found when I came, half of what happened could not have
happened, including library development, new programs,
building programs, morale, and everything else. So I
cannot say that I would do anything differently. I repeat,
all I can say is that I regret that we had to waste so much
time on struggle when that time could have been invested in
mining the gold in the community.
Administration Building, UCLA
see Murphy Hall, UCLA
Academic Senate, UCLA
Committee on the Budget
Allen, Raymond B.
Allen, Mrs. Raymond B.
Alumni Association, UCLA
Applied Arts, School of, UCLA
Architecture and Urban Planning,
School of, UCLA
Art, Department of, UCLA
Art Council, UCLA
Associated Students, UCLA
28, 29, 33, 34, 49,
175, 182, 189, 235,
14, 24, 34, 164, 186
25, 55, 99, 102, 107,
113, 114, 116, 190-
197, 203, 259, 260,
Baker, George Pierce 220
Band, Arnold J. 200,
Becket, Welton 37
Bel-Air Hotel 41,
Blue Shield, UCLA 191
Bolton, Earl 100-
Bowman, Donald M, 196,
Boyd, Philip L. 133,
Bright, David 224
Bright, Dolly (Mrs. David) 224-
Brisman, Shimeon 201
British Museum, London 232
Brown, Edmund G. 10 3,
Brown University 13,
Bundy , McGeorge 1
Burroughs and Wellcome 2 30
Business Administration, Graduate
School of, UCLA
see Management, Graduate School of,
101, 102, 108, 109,
111, 113, 114, 116
104, 157, 159
Byrne, Jerome C.
Report on the University of
California Institute of Technology
School of Engineering
California State Department of
California State Legislature
Ways and Means Committee
Campbell, Lily Bess
Campbell Hall, UCLA
Chancellor's Associates, UCLA
Chandler, Dorothy (Mrs. Norman)
Claremont Hotel, Berkeley
Clift Hotel, San Francisco
Institute of Fine Arts
School of Law
Commission on Higher Education in
American Republics (CHEAR)
Connell, Michael J., Memorial Fund
Cor ley, James
School of Engineering
39, 172, 207
88, 119, 120,
1, 17, 19, 54, 60, 61,
64, 68, 79, 115, 119,
163, 180, 203, 204, 243,
194, 196, 260
21, 22, 60, 64-65, 73, 74,
87, 119, 135-136, 137,
161, 163, 243
21, 22, 169
9, 13-14, 16
57, 58, 59
Crockwell, Martha Murphy
Davis, M. Philip
Davis, W. Thomas
Deans, Council of, UCLA
Democratic party, California
Democratic party, Kansas
Dentistry, School of, UCLA
Dickey, Judith Murphy
Dickson, Edward A.
Dickson, Wilhelmina (Mrs. Edward)
Dickson Art Center, UCLA
Dickson Court, UCLA
Docking, Virginia (Mrs. George)
Dow Chemical Company
Dykstra Hall, UCLA
170, 178, 182, 184, 251
23, 47, 54-55, 56-57,
58-59, 193, 256
54, 107, 110, 111,
3, 4, 5, 6
23, 47, 54,
3, 5, 11
39, 65, 207,
15, 24, 44,
Eddy, Arthur C.
Engineering, School of, UCLA
Ethnomusicology , Institute of,
Extension Division, UCLA
Faculty Center, UCLA
Fine Arts, College of, UCLA
179, 212-215, 217, 235
17, 23, 54, 64, 73, 87,
119, 120, 199, 243
Free Speech Movement
Galbraith, John S.
Gold Shield, UCLA
Gould, Mrs. Sam
Graduate Council, UCLA
Gross, Alice Murphy
Hail to the Hills of Westwood
Haines Hall, UCLA
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
Hamilton, Andrew J.
Hedrick, Earle R.
Heyns, Esther (Mrs. Roger)
Hitch, Charles J.
Home Economics, Department of, UCLA
1, 220, 238
180, 238, 239
85-86, 88, 133
17, 119, 120
147, 148, 149
51, 92, 141-151, 152, 154
72, 73, 165, 170-171
Inglis, Frances 211
Intercollegiate Athletics, Department 254-257
Johns Hopkins University
School of Medicine
102, 103, 105, 116
Kansas State Legislature
Keeney, Barnaby C.
Kellems, Jesse R.
Kerckhoff Hall, UCLA
Kerr, Kay (Mrs. Clark)
Kinsey, Douglas K.
Knudsen, Vern O.
Knudsen, Mrs. Vern 0.
3, 5, 8, 9, 11
211, 215, 218
1, 9, 14, 15-16, 17, 19,
26, 29, 32, 33, 38, 39,
40, 42-45, 50-53, 60,
64-69, 72-74, 78, 79,
81-164, 171, 178, 179,
182, 183, 184, 187, 188,
190, 239, 257
15, 69-72, 87, 110, 111,
112, 113, 116
99, 190, 193-195, 209,
Law, School of, UCLA
Letters and Science, College of,
Song of the Vowels
Lopez Mateos, Adolf o
2, 3, 241
49, 62-64, 72, 239-247
102, 103, 105
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Los Angeles Police Department
Los Angeles Times (newspaper)
McHenry, Mrs. Dean
McLaughlin, Donald H.
Management, Graduate School of, UCLA
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
School of Engineering
Maugham, Surrey Wellcome
Maugham, W. Somerset
Mayer, Louis B. , Foundation
Medical Center, UCLA
Medicine, School of, UCLA
Memorial Activities Center, UCLA
see also Pauley Pavilion, UCLA
Military Science, Department of, UCLA
Milner, Carolyn Murphy
Moore, Ernest Carroll
see Milner, Carolyn Murphy
Murphy, Cordelia (Mrs. Franklin E. )
Murphy, Franklin E.
Murphy, Franklin Lee
see Dickey, Judith Murphy
Murphy, Judy (Mrs. Franklin D.)
see Crockwell, Martha Murphy
17, 34, 35, 41, 66,
68, 80, 143, 150,
123, 143, 150
3, 10, 11, 16, 17, 19, 20,
30, 31, 32, 69-70, 71, 86-
87, 107, 111, 113, 114,
148, 166, 225
Murphy Hall, UCLA 247
Murphy, Franklin D. , Sculpture 216,
Museum of Cultural History, UCLA 226-
Museum of Modern Art, New York 225
Music, Department of, UCLA 217-218
Music Center of Los Angeles County 215
Naffziger, Howard C.
Nay lor, Nancy
Nursing, School of, UCLA
Pacific Coast Conference
Pauley, Bobbie (Mrs. Edwin)
Pauley, Edwin W.
Pauley Pavilion, UCLA
Physical Education, Department of,
Placement Center, UCLA
Powell, Lawrence Clark
Princeton Index of Christian Art
Public Affairs Services, Office of,
Public Health, School of, UCLA
Public Information, Office of, UCLA
Publications, Office of, UCLA
14, 15, 16-17, 19, 41,
60, 64, 68, 98, 103-
, 115, 117-118, 119,
, 163, 203-205, 206,
112, 113, 121, 122
49-50, 240, 241-242
13, 18, 219
216, 217, 235, 250
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Republican party, Kansas
Roth, William M.
Royce Hall, UCLA
St. Francis Hotel, San Francisco
Simon, Lucille (Mrs. Norton)
Sproul, Robert G.
Sproul, Mrs. Robert G.
Sproul Hall, UCLA
Department of Art History
State University of New York
State University of New York, Buffalo
Students for a Democratic Society
94, 97, 133-134, 158
92, 93, 146
25, 33-34, 37, 45,
90, 174, 177, 189
120, 137-138, 161, 223
1, 14, 15, 24
57, 58, 59, 61, 91,
140, 144, 145, 148,
238, 239, 257
93, 94, 97, 125-128, 129,
Theatre Group, UCLA
Truman, Harry S
65, 207, 208, 209-210
UCLA Foundation 190, 196-199
UCLA on the Move (book) 54
U.S. Atomic Energy Commission 9 3
U.S. Department of State 10 8
U.S. Secret Service 107, 109
University of California 1, 14-21, 22-23, 27-29,
32, 37-165, 167, 168,
169, 170-174, 175, 176,
177, 179, 182, 183, 184,
185, 187, 189, 190, 199,
238, 239, 243-246, 249
255, 258, 261
Academic Senate 172, 176
Board of Regents 1, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 24,
27, 29, 33, 34, 38, 39,
40-41, 50, 51, 52, 54,
58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 64,
65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 72,
73, 74, 77, 79, 80-89,
90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 98,
99, 103, 104, 107, 108,
110, 114, 115, 116-117,
118, 119-120, 121, 125-
128, 129-130, 132, 133,
134, 135-138, 141, 142,
144, 145, 146, 147, 149,
152, 153-155, 158, 160,
161, 162, 163, 164, 165,
172, 173, 174, 179, 182,
183, 184-185, 187, 188,
194, 199, 243, 244, 245,
255, 256, 257
Building and Grounds Committee 7 3
Office of the President 40, 83, 85, 106, 153
University of California, Berkeley 1, 38, 45, 50, 51, 52, 57,
61, 62, 63, 64, 74, 75,
76, 79, 80, 84, 85, 87,
90, 91, 92, 93, 95, 97,
99, 120, 121, 125, 126,
128, 129, 131-133, 134-
135, 140-151, 154, 155,
158, 159, 164, 165, 177,
181, 185, 199, 203, 205,
206, 235, 236, 242, 243,
245, 246, 247, 249, 251,
252, 255, 258, 261
Boalt Hall 181, 238
University of California, Berkeley,
California Alumni Association
Department of Art History
Department of Slavic Languages
School of Business Administration
University of California,
University of California,
University of California,
University of California,
School of Dentistry
University of California,
University of California,
University of California Press
University of Chicago
School of Business
School of Law
University of Kansas
Board of Regents
Department of English
School of Medicine
University of London
University of Michigan
University of Minnesota
University of Southern California
University Research Library, UCLA
, 96, 126, 133
-58, 134, 158, 181, 238
70, 79, 92
3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 11,
13, 20, 22, 27, 28,
38, 41, 167, 191, 192,
198, 222, 239, 240,
24, 172, 207, 209, 218,
63, 200, 201, 239, 240-
Wellcome Medical History
Westwood, Los Angeles
Wight, Frederick S.
Wight, Frederick S., Art Gallery,
Wilson, 0. Meredith
230, 231, 232
17, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43,
44, 45-46, 50, 51, 77,
78, 81, 84-85, 86, 87,
90, 98, 139, 140, 141,
146, 147, 153, 155-157,
221, 223, 234
School of Law
36-37, 45, 47, 89, 90
Director ' s note ; On August 17, 1967, Verne A. Stadtman
interviewed UCLA Chancellor Franklin D. Murphy, as part of
Stadtman 's research for preparing The Centennial Record of
the University of California, 1868-1968 . Stadtman later
forwarded to Dr. Murphy a draft transcript for review and
corrections, which Murphy approved, but stipulated that it
not be made available to the public until his death.
Following Murphy's death on June 16, 1994, I reviewed the
draft transcript and file of correspondence among Stadtman,
Murphy, and James V. Mink, former Head, UCLA Department of
Special Collections, and decided to append Stadtman 's 1967
interview to the interview which the UCLA Oral History
Program had conducted with Murphy in 1973. What follows is
the text of the transcript as reviewed and approved by
Murphy in 1967, subject only to minor editorial
modifications to conform with the Oral History Program's
current format and policies on punctuation, proper name
identification, and paragraphing. The original draft
typescript approved by Murphy is on file in the offices of
the Oral History Program. There are no corresponding
--Dale E. Treleven, UCLA Oral History Program
July 11, 1994
STADTMAN: Let us go right down the questions: How were you
approached about becoming Chancellor here?
MURPHY: I was approached while Clark Kerr and I were
members at that time of something called the Commission on
Higher Education in the American Republic. We were at a
meeting together--this I think was in 1959--in Santiago,
Chile, and he had previously called me by phone and told me
that the [University of California Board of] regents were
interested in the possibility of my becoming chancellor, did
I have any interest. I said, well, I would be willing to
talk with him, and we agreed that we would talk, which we
did in Santiago, Chile, in the spring of 1950, late
February. Subsequently, I agreed to look at the job and
came twice to California and met the regents and had visits
with the regents in San Francisco at one of their meetings
and met some of the faculty here, and in essence that was
it. And that answers your second question, namely that Kerr
was my first contact in the matter.
STADTMAN: Now about the third.
MURPHY: I was unaware of the fact that I had been a
candidate for the presidency in 1958, was told that only two
or three years later by a couple of the regents. I was
completely unaware of it when I was approached as
STADTMAN: Had you met any of the regents at that time?
MURPHY: I knew no regents at all. I had known Bob [Robert
Gordon] Sproul rather well.
STADTMAN: So if you had been put on the list, probably that
was the direction.
MURPHY: I would suppose.
STADTMAN: What attracted you to the position at that time?
UCLA had had some troubles up until--
MURPHY: Two things, basically. I was then convinced and
still remain convinced--indeed I think there is more
evidence of it now than even then- -that UCLA as such had the
potential of becoming one of the distinguished universities
of the country. I am more convinced of that now than I was
even then, and I think it is well on its way. So one saw in
the job--at least I saw in it--the chance to be involved in
a creative development, but one that I felt had almost a
guarantee of success as well, if it were done reasonably
well. Secondly, I was then, and am even more now, convinced
of the excitement of living in Southern California,
especially Los Angeles. I came, you recall, seven years
ago, and Los Angeles was just beginning at that time--but
you could really smell it and sense it--to explode in
cultural and creative terms. It was a very fortunate time
to have come because, by virtue of my job, I was immediately
catapulted into the cultural developments of the area, the
music center [Los Angeles County Music Center], the art
museum [Los Angeles County Museum of Art], etc. So it was
the excitement, the creative excitement that I saw both in
UCLA and in the city of Los Angeles, on the other side.
STADTMAN: You had been aware of the difficulties of the
MURPHY: Yes, I had. That leads to the next question: "Was
the scope of the job fairly represented to you before you
came?" I will answer this frankly and with candor: It was
not. I had thought, and perhaps-- In retrospect, I thought
many times that I should have been more precise in my
questioning. I took a little bit too much on faith. I had
thought that the authority of the chancellor was far greater
than it turned out to be after I got on the job, and that
perhaps leads into question number six.
MURPHY: I think there is no secret that from the day I
arrived, or shortly thereafter, I discovered the realities.
Let me say parenthetically, going back to the previous
question, I had been warned by a number of people not to
take the job. I had run the University of Kansas as its
chief executive officer. It was a smaller university,
actually, than UCLA, but I had full authority with direct
responsibility to the regents. I had been warned by a
number of very knowledgeable people in American higher
education that I really shouldn't take the job at UCLA
because it was really impossible, they said. They said it
was impossible for two reasons: that the chancellor would
be ground between the great tradition of faculty autonomy
and control on the one hand and the centralized
administrative control from Berkeley on the other hand; that
the chancellor had an awful lot of responsibility, and that
this was the kind of situation that would destroy a man. As
I say-- I am now repeating a little bit--having been told
this by people, I asked some very specific questions of
President Kerr and of the regents, and I must say that, in
retrospect, either I asked the wrong questions or I didn't
get very clear answers. I took the job assuming that a lot
more authority would have been mine than, in fact, I
For example, I found it almost incredible to believe
that at the first commencement it was expected that the
president would give the degrees to my students. I said,
"You know, this is ridiculous. You are responsible for the
students on the campus. You are supposed to be the leader;
[they are] supposed to look to you for leadership. And then
at the critical moment in their lives when the degree is
granted, the chancellor sits on the stage like anybody else!
You may recall that this was the first real confrontation.
And ever since I have been here, I have given the
undergraduate degree. I am speaking about the degrees in
course, not the honorary degrees. Things like that.
I found it incredible to believe that the final
decision, at least before the regents, in terms of
appointment and promotion of tenure faculty didn't lie with
the chancellor. After all, he worked with the faculty, it
was his faculty. I am not now speaking about the [Academic]
Senate input but the administrative decision, things of this
sort. So that comes to number six, and I would say that
there are-- The question is "What have been your most
difficult challenges as chancellor?" I think the first one,
basically, has been that I have had to fight for-- I think
the record is probably clear on this--I am trying to be just
as candid as I can- -that in the beginning I was alone even
among chancellors for a basic decentralization of the
administration of the university. I have said many times
that the governance of the university had not been arranged
by the regents to match its enormous growth, that you were
in danger of creating a dinosaur with a huge body and a
little nervous system that was incapable of managing this
vast enterprise. I have said that policy should be
centralized--that is, basic university statewide policy
should be centralized--but that once decisions, budgetary and
otherwise, are made, administration should be left to the
campus. The name of the game should be post audit rather
than looking over people's shoulders. I would say that the
most difficult challenge has been trying to fight through
within the system my very strong views about matching the
authority of the chancellor with his responsibilities and
what the public and the regents have expected of him.
I think, incidentally, this terrible division of
authority and responsibility really accounts for the fact
that I have been in this system for only seven years and I
am the second-oldest chancellor in service. You add up
the number of chancellors that have been around in this
system in the last seven years and you will discover that
it is over twenty, including three at [University of
California] Berkeley and two or three at [University of
California] San Diego and two or three at [University of
California] Santa Barbara, and two at [University of
California] Riverside, and so on. And the reason that you
did not have chancellors that could survive the difficult
strains and pressures, for one reason and another, was that
you gave them all this responsibility but the authority was
completely blurred and divided between the regents, who
wouldn't give it to the president, and the president, who
wouldn't give it to the chancellors, or who couldn't because
the regents still had it, and so on.
STADTMAN: This is the question that I wanted to clarify:
When you were first aware that the chancellor did not have
the authority that you thought he would have, is it your
impression that he did not have it because the president did
not have it to give or--?
MURPHY: Or whether the president didn't want to give it?
My view is that it was both. I think that the record is
clear. Clark Kerr had suffered under this as chancellor.
When he became president, he moved very strongly and quickly
to make some acts of decentralization. I think that the
record is equally clear, however, that as time went by the
degree of enthusiasm for decentralizing--I am speaking of
operation, not long-range policy- -became less. At that
point I think the record is clear. Part of the reason had
to do with the fact that he didn't have it to give. There
is no question about that. On the other hand, in my view--
and I think there is some record on this- -there were some
things that President Kerr felt, even if the regents were to
give, should in fact not be decentralized. A very good
example of this is the final decision on tenure and
STADTMAN: I understand that you and John [S.] Galbraith
apparently led the fight on that.
MURPHY: With Roger [W.] Heyns in full agreement, although
he was a little late in coming. We felt that this was the
ultimate symbol. If the chancellor could in fact look his
faculty in the face and say, "I am the administrative
head"-- There was nothing more symbolic and important than
this particular act. Galbraith and I did lead the fight on
it. Heyns joined up very soon after he came. He, I think- -
You will have a chance to visit with him, and he will give
his views on this.
MURPHY: Now, the second basic problem that I have had as
chancellor has been to bring UCLA and the community and Los
Angeles into some kind of relationship and dialogue. When I
arrived here I discovered very quickly that UCLA really was
not regarded by the establishment and the structure in Los
Angeles as their institution. It was an institution located
STADTMAN: What was?
MURPHY: USC [University of Southern California], I would
suspect, because of time and age and so forth. I have
worked very hard, both in terms of my personal participation
in the life of the city and in encouraging our faculty and
deans to become involved in, as appropriate, the life of the
city and the area of Southern California. To somehow weave
the image of the university into the area in which it is
located and to get an increasing number of people to
understand that it is their university and not somebody
else's up north or something, you know. I must say that
this is terribly important in a place like Los Angeles,
where you have such a vast input of new, nonnative
population. People who got their degrees, college people,
in the East and the Middle West and then come here to live--
In a positive sense, this is vast in-migration. And I have
been deeply interested in building up what I called the dual
loyalty, the loyalty of the Harvard [University] man to his
institution of Harvard but at the same time getting him to
recognize that, now he is living in Southern California, he
has some stake in the development of the importance of UCLA.
STADTMAN: Gee, Chancellor Murphy, this doesn't square away
with the picture that people have of UCLA being the darling
of Southern California.
MURPHY: Seven years ago it was not. You should talk to
some of the regents. The first thing that Mrs. [Dorothy
Buff urn] Chandler, the first thing that Ed [Edward W.]
Carter, the thing that John [E.] Canaday, Bill [William E.]
Forbes all said to me is "We have got somehow to bring UCLA
into the mainstream of the life of Los Angeles; people don't
regard it as having this kind of relationship." But anyway,
whether it was needed or not, this had been a major concern
A third challenge had been to work on the so-called
inferiority complex of UCLA, the little brother complex. We
might as well touch on it now because it has been a major
factor. Here again, I am going to be very candid. The
story of the difficulty of the birth of UCLA is well known
and documented. At the time the [University of California]
Southern Branch was created, the administrators in Berkeley
didn't want it. It was forced on them almost by threat:
either Southern California would have a state university
presence as part of the system of the University of
California, or if Berkeley wanted to keep its head in the
sand, then a new university would be established. It was
the latter threat as much as anything that finally pushed
this through. At that time there was one southern regent,
Edward [A.] Dickson, and all the rest were north of the
Tehachapi [Mountains] and mainly from the Bay Area. And the
position of the then president--I forget exactly whether it
was [Benjamin I.] Wheeler or [William W. ] Campbell--is also
clear in the record. This was finally accomplished.
Again, the record is clear and there are people still
around that could be interviewed. For example, the Southern
Branch, and even when we came to the new campus, forty years
ago-- At that time the commitment was clear that there would
be no graduate study at UCLA. There would be no graduate
study, which meant there would be no Ph.D. degrees or no
professional schools. This was to be a feeder to Berkeley
of undergraduates. Now, the record is clear. The School of
Engineering, the School of Law, the School of Medicine were
in essence forced upon the university. And I have had long
conversations with Phil [M. Philip] Davis and Ernie [Ernest
E.] Debs, who were in the legislature at that time, and they
tell me the story. It is not a pleasant story. But this
was all known. This was all known to these people down
here, one way or another.
Then when there was suspicion that was expressed to me
by the faculty-- "Why is it that the Berkeley library budget
is X times that of UCLA? Why is it that the faculty-student
ratio is remarkably different between the two campuses?"
Why this, why that, why this? And one of my first jobs was
first of all to get the facts. You can't begin to try to
convince people that they have got to grow up and be mature
unless you can honestly talk to them. And the facts were
not very pleasant when I finally got them. I will give you
one example: At that time the incidental fee, which is
collected from all of the students of the university to take
care of nonacademic requirements of the university, was
collected from every student and then sent to Berkeley,
where the statewide administration distributed that
incidental fee in terms of the so-called extracurricular
student needs. I discovered when I came that X number of
dollars was going annually from UCLA to Berkeley but
distributed back was X number of dollars minus a very
considerable number of dollars to service UCLA campus
extracurricular needs, whereas Berkeley put in Y number of
dollars on the same formula and got back Y plus a very
substantial number of dollars. Whereas the UCLA needs were,
in effect, greater than the Berkeley needs: it was younger;
it didn't have the endowments and other kinds of things. It
took me a long time to get these data, but when I got them I
forced the issue, and finally, about three years after that
the incidental fee was collected on the campus and kept
there and it was decided that Berkeley would have to live
within the amount of fees that it got from its students just
as we do .
We discovered an enormous differential between the
library budgets of the two institutions, even when
calculated on a per capita faculty or student basis. Here
again we demanded equity. We still don't quite have it, but
we are in the process of almost getting it. This is when
the regents created their long-range library plan in which
they stated there would be two major libraries, north and
south, with the other institutions depending upon these
major research libraries for support. The faculty-student
ratio was very, very different. The amount of money per
faculty member for organized research in Berkeley- -from the
state, that is--was substantially in excess of that at UCLA.
In other words, it was perfectly clear that the complaints
of the UCLA faculty were not just dog in the manger.
MURPHY: And I felt my job here then was twofold: first of
all, to get what I call simple equity on the one hand and,
second, having achieved simple equity, say to this faculty,
"Stop all of this crybaby nonsense and let us get on with
the business." You can't earn what Berkeley has earned over
a hundred years of distinguished service to society by
crying about the fact that they have got it, and as a matter
of fact you don't want to take it away from them. I always
said, incidentally, that the achievement of equity between
Berkeley and UCLA should not be at the expense of Berkeley,
that the regents and the statewide administration had to
fight to get additional resources which would go to us,
rather than taking resources from Berkeley, the balance.
This has been my position and it has been clear. Now, in
addition to this we had the problem, to close this issue
out-- We tried to get simple equity in terms of financial
treatment on some reasonably agreed-to formula that would
not do violence to Berkeley but would simply give us what we
deserved to do the job. And, secondly, I have said to the
faculty, "As we get this, then, get on about your business
and stop grumbling about history! This is history, and
forget it. We are dealing with the present and the future."
My next problem, as I view it, has been to try to build
a sense of identity in UCLA itself. When I came here this
was essentially a commuting campus. It was a campus in
which both student body and alumni had no facilities or
resources at all to provide really on-campus vitality or
visibility or activity. All the major athletic events were
played away from the campus because there were no facilities
here. The kinds of things that Berkeley or Harvard or Yale
[University] or Princeton [University] or Stanford
[University] could do about homecoming weekends and bringing
classes back and so on were just not possible, or at least
very difficult. There was nothing in a certain sense for
the students on the campus except classrooms and
laboratories, which meant that this was for many of them or
for most of them a kind of cafeteria, academic cafeteria.
Come and nibble a sandwich or two, academically speaking,
and go home. We had no dormitories; we had no facilities
for foreign students, we had no athletic facilities of
consequence; our [student] union building was practically
next to-- Kerckhoff Hall was just a tiny little place and so
We have made a major effort to build the kind of
facilities and then the program to give some real sense of
identity and vitality on the campus to what is still a
fairly larger number of commuters and will always be, but
now with an added mixture of an ever larger number of people
who make their full life here. This meant a major union
building development, this meant a massive dormitory
program; this meant the creation of our [Sunset] Canyon
Recreation Center; this meant the creation of a married
student housing program of some consequence; this meant a
major addition to our alumni facilities. It meant the
[Edwin W.] Pauley Pavilion, where at least the major
basketball activity can be carried out, and we have a
program for additional athletic facilities on campus. A
track stadium, we built facilities for crew and for other
minor sports, so that an ever larger number of people can
find that aspect of their activities serviced here.
And related to that has been the additional problem of
growing up under the very big tree of Berkeley, the shade of
the tree. The conditioned reflex--and I, after all, had
been in education a good many years before I came out here--
both in the United States and around the world, when you
said the University of California you automatically meant
Berkeley. These were synonymous terms. UCLA was beginning
to get some visibility around the country, but not as the
University of California but as UCLA, because Berkeley had
preempted, out of history, the title of the University of
California, as a practical matter.
So I said, "Okay, let's not fight that battle. Let's
just give that to Berkeley, as it were, from a de facto."
And I said, "From now on out, everything around here is
UCLA." The first thing that I did was to tell the telephone
operators you didn't say University of California, you said
UCLA. I had a lot of our stationery changed. I said that
we will make those four letters just as visible and
indelible as MIT [Massachusetts Institute of Technology] , or
something of this sort. This again went to the point that
in order to get the kind of loyalty and the kind of
commitment, the old school-tie commitment, you had to have
something visible and something specific and precise, and
the concept of the University of California was simply much
too fuzzy for this particular point of view, especially
since, as I say, Berkeley had in fact over nearly a hundred
years preempted that, in any event.
This again I made quite clear to the regents and Kerr
and others when I told them frankly that this was going to
be my position and was, in my view, not going to do violence
to the long-range development of what is not a university
any longer but a system of higher education. It was going
to add strength ultimately, because as I was able to
strengthen UCLA, I would add more strength to the regents as
they needed to face the legislature and the people of
California down the road. Because, after all, if I am
successful or Dan [Daniel G.] Aldrich [Jr.] is successful or
John Galbraith is successful in building the sense of real
local identity and support, it will be not because somebody
in San Diego is really interested in what happens with the
Berkeley-Stanford football game except if by accident he is
an alumnus of either Berkeley or Stanford, it will be out of
a sense of pride as to what happens at San Diego, you see.
You build up this foci of strength around the state related
to the local institution, and in sum total then, as long as
the university is unified through one board of regents, you
then make a very considerable contribution to the total
strength of the system.
STADT^4AN: Can you count on the people in this vicinity
carrying over their loyalty to the entire system when the
chips are down?
MURPHY: Well, they have to, because the only way they can
support UCLA through the unified regents' budget is to
support the regents' budget. You see, that is the key.
Now, if you had nine separate universities, each of them
with a separate board, each of them with their own route to
the legislature, you would have chaos, then you would be in
a dog-eat-dog position, and this would not-- Look at the
strength of the university through the whole Berkeley FSM
[Free Speech movement] difficulty. Our ability to keep the
legislature from chopping much further away then they did in
terms of teaching assistants and in terms of out-of-state
waivers and things of this sort, when a lot of those fellows
up there as a result of Berkeley and the FSM wanted to get
rid of it completely, was because Emil [M.] Mrak and I and
John Galbraith could go to the legislature and say, "God,
you can't do that because we have a unified system; if you
do what you are talking about doing you will do violence to
us." And the fact that we were able to throw our shoulders
to the wheel when Berkeley was practically a word, two years
ago, that you couldn't dare mention in the legislature
actually saved a lot of things that Berkeley would have
inevitably lost. The key to it is, of course, the retention
of a unified system at the policy- budget-making level. And
my position on this is perfectly clear: I am strongly
opposed to any notion of decentralizing that. Well, so much
So that has been a major issue, how to get a sense of
identity, how to get these people prideful of being a part
of UCLA and building its visibility and strength and not
having them saying, "Gee" --you know, subconsciously-- "it is
good to be in chemistry here, but nationwide I would have
much more distinction if I were in chemistry at Berkeley. "
Make UCLA mean just as much as the University of California,
which, as I say, in the scholarly field still means
I think, finally, my most important challenge has been
to build an administrative organization here that matches
the much increased responsibilities that we have as a result
of decentralization. The regents generally, and the state
of California legislatively, have been very slow to come to
the recognition that competent administration is essential
in a university in the modern world, and I must say that the
faculty has been equally bad on this. They still have the
old romantic notion, many of them, the faculty, that you can
run a modern university like you can a medieval university,
which was run by a bunch of senate committees with lots of
authority and no responsibility, as far as the public is
concerned. The University of California has always looked
down on administrators, basically. You can see this in
salary scales, you can see it in authority, you can see it
in the whole range of activities. I have had a dual job
here: at the one level, at the regents and the statewide
administration level, fighting for the kinds of money and
salary scales to permit me to recruit first-rate
administrative people; with the senate, on the other hand,
getting them to recognize the visibility and authority of
these administrators in order to make this thing work. And
I must say that with the two appointments made this last
year, we have about filled out our complement. I feel very
comfortable about the way this has developed.
However, this leads to question number seven: "Which
ones of these issues remain unsurmounted?" I still think
that we have a way to go at the administrative level. We
still have not yet achieved the administrative
sophistication to match both the administrative need, on the
one hand, and to match the quality of the faculty on the
other. Secondly, I think that we still have a way to go in
terms of getting final equity with the Berkeley campus.
Again, these are arithmetical facts and figures. We still
haven't quite achieved the library parity that has been
promised. We still have not achieved by any means the
parity in organized research resources on the two campuses.
But I must say that enormous progress has been made in the
last two or three years in this regard, and especially do I
think that it will be made in the next two years.
STADT^4AN: But isn't this, as you alluded yourself a few
minutes ago, pretty much a question of history as much as
MURPHY: Oh, yes, I think it is history that created it.
STADTMAN: Just the fact that UCLA has already done in its
lifetime most of the things in a much shorter period of
MURPHY: The problem is this, though, now, and it is a very
complicated problem. The regents and the statewide
administration and the legislature and the [California
State] Department of Finance now refer to UCLA and Berkeley
as mature campuses, and they are therefore treated exactly
the same, presumably. They speak of [University of
California] Santa Cruz and [University of California]
Irvine, for example, as new campuses; they get--and I agree
to this--special treatment in terms of percentage of tenure
faculty, and so on. Then [University of California] Davis,
Santa Barbara, Riverside are referred to as developing
campuses. They get special treatment, not as special as
Santa Cruz and Irvine, but better treatment--these are per
capita kind of calculations--than Berkeley and UCLA. Now, I
agree with this in principle, I agree in that in terms of
the stage of your development, you need different kinds of
resources and different amounts. So I have no objections to
this system, but it will work only as far as UCLA is
concerned, if we are to be grouped with Berkeley as the two
mature campuses, that we are as mature as Berkeley in terms
of resources. If we are not as mature as Berkeley, then we
are not a mature campus.
STADTMAN: I see.
MURPHY: It is that simple.
STADTMAN: What you are actually saying —
MURPHY: I said, "I don't want any more. I just want the
resources to match what you say is our responsibility, and
then it is up to us to perform. But you can't ask us to
perform at a level that you have arbitrarily set with less
than the resources of someone else that is at that level.
That is all." Now a lot of progress has been made, and I
think in a year or two this will be the end of the history,
but it has taken an awful lot of my time and energy and
emotion and pain and travail, and I don't want to ever have
to go through it again.
STADTMAN: Well, this is one of your unfinished jobs, but
isn't it also probably fair to say that this is one of your
MURPHY: Yes, I would think so. Even so, I would hate to
have to do it again. I would like to run a university
rather than, you know--
Finally, we still have a way to go in terms of this
UCLA identification. We have special problems because we
are an urban campus, and therefore the job is a little
tougher than if you were isolated out in the country or if
you had had a hundred years to do it in a different period
of history. But we have made enormous strides here in terms
of programs and in terms of physical facilities to make the
programs work, and I see the end of that rainbow in terms of
feasibility in sight. Now, do you believe that UCLA can
achieve scholarly distinction in worldwide terms when it
depends so much on regional support? Well, actually, UCLA
is not a regional institution. The bulk of our graduate
students are, of course, non-Californians, and we are
rapidly becoming a graduate school . Our centers for
African, Middle Eastern, and Latin American studies are
among the most distinguished of their kind in the United
States. These are three of the peaks that we have been able
Now, we do depend-- The only regional support we look
for, and that is why perhaps we need to define that term--
We of course get the major part of our support from the
whole state of California through the legislature. We get
an enormous amount of support, the bulk of our research
budget, from the federal government, which is, of course,
not regional . So the only kind of support that we can talk
about in terms of regionality is the private support we get
in dollars at least.
STADTMAN: And moral support.
MURPHY: And moral support. And here I think that we are in
an unusually advantageous position. This goes back to our
getting UCLA identified with the community. If you will
have somebody pull out the records over the last five years
in terms of private support, the last five years of private
support, I think you will find that this campus has led all
the other campuses of the university, including Berkeley,
every year. And it has all come practically locally. There
is an enormous financial resource untapped in Southern
California, private, which we are now beginning to tap. And
I see in this one of the great advantages and one of the
great pluses that will permit us in a much shorter period of
time to build up our endowment resources to a level that at
least can begin to approach Berkeley.
STADTMAN: Something here that I think is pretty important:
You have done this despite the fact that you are in the most
sensitive area of the state vis-a-vis private institutions
and their feeling of prior claims on private giving. Has
there been any howl?
MURPHY: There have been a few squeaks of pain but they
haven't been howls, and I think that is for two or three
reasons. First of all, I have offered my services, and they
have been used by private institutions to help them raise
money. I have made speeches for USC. I have gone down to
the [Los Angeles] City Council and have fought as hard as
Norman [H.] Topping for the urban renewal project that USC
had to have if it were to develop. I have helped raise
money in a period of fund-raising drives for the Claremont
[Colleges] group and also other private institutions.
Occidental [College] for one. Now, secondly, our private
fund-raising has been on an annual basis, nonrestricted type
of funds. We have been confident on its being limited to
alumni, but here the very regionality of our undergraduate
student body is a help, because the bulk of our alumni live
in Southern California and we are visible to them and we are
close to them.
Thirdly, I have a clear understanding with the heads of
the private institutions that in terms of ad hoc projects
like the Jules Stein Eye Institute or like the sculpture
court in the north campus we have just completed, or like
somebody deeply interested in cancer or rare books or art,
if they are interested in UCLA then this is not regarded as
a competition, because very often-- You take the Jules Stein
Eye Institute: The issue here was, in terms of Jules ' s own
position, would it come to UCLA or would it go to the
University of Chicago? It was not a competition locally.
The question of this sculpture basically was whether it
would come here or be sold as part of an estate. There was
never any question of whether it would go to Occidental or
this or that. There are people in this community who know
of our interest in building our library collection,
especially the rare book collections. This is not a
competition with Occidental, because they are not interested
in the rare book program; Caltech [California Institute of
Technology] is not in the rare book program. Our
competition here is like Stanford or Berkeley, or in one
case recently, Lehigh University. In this case, ' SC was not
in the picture.
Now, I am not going to say that there hasn't been a
sense of friction any more than I am going to say that there
isn't a sense of friction in the Bay Area sometimes between
Stanford and Berkeley. This is very ancient; this goes back
a long way. I am saying that there have not been howls,
that we have managed to do this. One thing that I think has
prevented it--at least it has kept the howls down to a low
grumble--has been our insistence that we would not engage in
any annual fund-raising to the general community for nickels
and dimes or hundreds of dollars or thousands of dollars or
five thousand dollars. So we really either stay with the
alumni on that basis, as they fully respect our rights to
that, or the occasional multimillion dollar ad hoc project
would come either here or go some place else other than a
Now, finally, let me say when you talk about regional
support-- I have talked about the private regional support,
and it is enormous, and as I say, I think we have just
barely begun to tap it. I see literally tens of millions of
dollars in the near future in all kinds of interesting
projects relating to distinction. But beyond that, this is
not a regional university. We have the third largest number
of foreign students in any university of the United States;
only Berkeley and Columbia [University] have more. As I
say, the bulk of our graduate students--and we are becoming
a graduate institution--are all non-Californians, the
majority. This is a highly international school. But like
Columbia it is urban, or the University of Chicago. It is
in the city. The University of Chicago gets the bulk of its
money from Chicago actually, yet it is thought of as an
All right, sir, should we go to the next? "Does UCLA--
you or the faculty- -regard the new campuses at San Diego and
Irvine as competition for support?" No. Not at all. As a
matter of fact--and I hope that you would talk to them--you
will find that we made a conscious decision around here, and
it wasn't difficult to achieve, that we would do to Irvine
or to San Diego or Santa Barbara or Riverside the kind of
thing that we felt Berkeley over a time had tried early to
do to UCLA (that is a matter of fact): we would hold out the
hand of real support.
Now, the first symptom of that, when I arrived here,
the university [Academic] Senate existed as the senate north
and the senate south. The senate north was run by Berkeley.
The meetings were held there and it was a Berkeley senate.
The senate south was actually run by UCLA.
You know, these fellows had to come to the meetings,
and they couldn't come or wouldn't come. So you would have
a meeting of the senate, and there would maybe be one or two
or maybe none from some of these smaller campuses, and
mainly UCLA guys all making decisions, sometimes, about what
San Diego wanted to do or what Santa Barbara wanted to do.
And I declared that this was outrageous. This was a part,
again, of my principle of decentralization. With a broadly
based university policy, it was not our business to be
telling San Diego what they wanted to do. I was one of the
first fighters for the decentralization of the senate and
got our people in the senate, our faculty, to raise the
issue and begin the battle to decentralize the senate so
Davis would have its own senate and it didn't have to go to
Berkeley on hands and knees and say, "Please, we would like
to start a program in this, that, and the other thing." And
the same with San Diego.
STADTMAN: Was this part of the problem you mentioned
earlier when you said people had advised you to be between
the senate and the faculty--?
MURPHY: The faculty on the one hand and the statewide
administration on the other.
STADTMAN: In that case, your feeling apparently was that
the faculty that you had to contend with was not really the
UCLA faculty but this other.
MURPHY: Right, exactly. And even the Berkeley faculty. I
didn't want the Berkeley faculty, through the senate
mechanism, to veto-- In those days the basic thing was that
the southern division would take a position, the northern
division would take a position, and then they would get
together and decide on a unified basis what they could--
They couldn't initiate something for UCLA; they would block
it. It was like the Russian veto. I said that that was
none of their business. It is this faculty's business. I
felt that I could deal with this faculty, but I felt that I
couldn't deal with nine faculties. And I think the record
is clear, we are able to, basically, deal with the faculty.
But my point is that--back to Irvine and the other
southern campuses--we do not regard them as competitors for
support. I have long believed that we have got to have a
system, and I supported Clark Kerr in his expansion program
all the way, without reservations. I think it is his great
contribution as president. I will say however, frankly,
that we have felt not the financial competition, support
competition, but in terms of recruitment of our faculty we
have suffered a great pain. And here we had to be very
disciplined, because actually-- It is kind of ironic. In
terms of trying to keep our faculty from raids, we have far
greater success against Harvard, University of Chicago, and
Yale than we do against Irvine, Santa Barbara, and San
Diego. They have done more violence to us in terms of
taking away faculty than out-of-state institutions. So in
this area we do have a degree of sensitivity. By God, we
have provided, what, three chancellors, [Dean E.] McHenry,
Galbraith, [Ivan H.] Hinderaker; we have provided deans for
Page Smith at Santa Cruz; etc., etc. And I think the record
is clear that UCLA has provided a great deal more to these
southern campuses in terms of manpower than Berkeley by a
great deal. You can get these figures from Angus [E.]
Taylor. But nonetheless we bite our lip and go forward. We
don't feel competitive with them and we have tried to help
in all possible ways.
"Do we feel any pressure from state college
"Has UCLA overcome its little brother feelings toward
Berkeley?" I think I have discussed this.
"Does the existence of so many private institutions in
the southern part of the state affect UCLA?" Not really.
This is the only part, at least at the moment, that I can
think of that I would want to go off the record. Well, let
me stay on the record for a minute. I think healthy
competition among educational institutions is good. I think
it spurs and stimulates. I think, for example in the Bay
Area, it is a wonderful thing that Stanford and Berkeley are
first-rate institutions. There is a mutual stimulation,
like a Harvard-Yale competition. Therefore, I am delighted
that we have Caltech, I am delighted that we have the
Claremont group, which is a very distinguished group of
mainly liberal arts, and Occidental.
Our big problem has been USC. Here I go off the
record. All I say is, I don't mind this being on the tape,
I don't want it written up in this way. Our big problem is
that USC is the oldest and quantitatively the largest
private institution in Southern California and until very
recently has been qualitatively the worst. The result of
this has been that they have watched UCLA grow qualitatively
and quantitatively and their whole reaction has been one of
envy. The insecure man looking at something overtaking him
and passing him. Their attitudes, therefore, have been dog
in the manger, negative and destructive rather than
constructive. This is slowly changing, and I give Norman
Topping the greatest credit for this. Norman has done an
incredible job in raising the standards at USC. They still
have a way to go, but really, in a certain way he has done a
more remarkable job than Welly [J.E. Wallace] Sterling has
done at Stanford. Wally has done a tremendous job, but he
started at a much higher level. He [Topping] has raised the
aspirations of those people, he has raised the aspirations
of the board, and he has raised enormous amounts of money.
He is beginning now to acguire some first-rate scholars.
And when USC reaches a level of quality, a qualitative level
that begins to make it intellectually speaking in the league
of Stanford and Berkeley and UCLA, this will be a great day
for us. Because then there will be competition, but the
competition will be onward and up rather than "Let's do
something to UCLA to slow down its growth because it is
getting too far beyond us." But in principle I welcome an
ever stronger and ever more qualitative effort in private
higher education in Southern California.
"For many years UCLA benefited from having a southern
bloc of regents; does it have such a bloc now?" I don't
think so. I find it rather fascinating that at regents
meetings you find Bill Forbes, Ed Carter, and others showing
as much interest as to what is happening in Irvine or Santa
Cruz or Davis as they will at UCLA. As a matter of fact, I
have even sometimes complained a little, saying, "Listen,
guys, don't forget your back door." I also want to point
out that when you talk about the southern bloc you are
talking about regents whose interests and attitudes are
ranged all the way from, if I can use the phrase, liberalism
to the unpredictability of Norton Simon to the attitude of
an Ed Pauley, who has a somewhat more traditional approach
and has a somewhat more conservative approach, you might
say. So that I think the regents really do not break down
today in geographical blocs as much as they do in
philosophical blocs, and I don't think any institution
either benefits or is disadvantaged by that kind of a
STADT^4AN: In your earlier remarks you said that the
development of this bloc is a conscious kind of thing and it
helped UCLA at one point.
MURPHY: I think you have to go back before I came, even, for
that. I think there is no doubt about the fact that some of
the alumni regents in earlier times, utilizing both the
alumni association and their positions on the board, were
fighting very, very hard proprietary battles in the board on
behalf of UCLA. But this I think is no longer true.
"What is the significance for the support of UCLA of
the fact that two appointed regents are former presidents
of the UCLA Alumni Association? Have you found this
circumstance particularly helpful?" No. Not particularly.
For example. Bill Forbes, who is one of these, had
daughters who went to Santa Barbara and to Berkeley, and I
think he had more to say in the regents meetings about Santa
Barbara and Berkeley than he had UCLA. John Canaday and I--
and this is on the record- -have had some very sharp
differences about the handling of students at UCLA. He is a
close friend of mine, but I am also a close friend of Ellie
[Elinor R. ] Heller, and Donald [H.] McLaughlin was a close
friend of mine. I don't think that I can point to a single
thing on this campus that is here because some regents put
some unusual pressure on behalf of UCLA beyond what a regent
who might know a little more about UCLA understood to be a
simple equity. In other words, it was well known that
Donald McLaughlin as a regent had a special interest in
Berkeley, but that special interest in Berkeley in my
opinion never did violence to UCLA. Donald was very fair
about that .
STADTMAN: Of course, Dickson--
MURPHY: Now, this is before. Oh, before my time, there
isn't any question about the fact that even survival, to say
nothing about growth and professional schools establishment,
depended critically upon Edward Dickson fighting the UCLA
battle. I mean just fighting it like Sir Galahad, aided and
supported by the alumni presidents. I am saying that in the
last seven years since I have been here, I have seen very
little of that, and I don't think you will see much of it.
I don't think it is necessary anymore.
STADTMAN: This in a way takes care of this, but there is
the question of the historian that someone writing a history
does keep in mind. That is, do the Southern California
regents ever get together, ever huddle together, this kind
of thing, to your knowledge?
MURPHY: No. Especially in the last five years. There used
to be the tradition of people going to the regents meetings--
You see, now they are all over the place, but when they were
between L.A. and Berkeley, most of the Southern California
regents used to go to the northern meetings on Ed Pauley's
airplane, and they had the inadvertent opportunity to
huddle. But I don't see any huddles at all. For example, I
see Norton Simon, who is a southern regent, participating in
discussions in the hall way more with Ellie Heller and with
Bill [William K.] Coblentz than I see him talk to John
Canaday, and so on. I don't think this geographic thing
is-- If you want to talk about the regents being somewhat
divided today in camps, I don't think the geographic thing
holds up anymore. I think it is accidental.
STADTMAN: Do you think it is a political thing?
MURPHY: I think it is more philosophical. I would even go
beyond politics and I would say that it is more
philosophical. What a university is. Freedom for students.
Rights of faculty. This kind of thing.
"Do you tend to confer more with regents in Southern
California than with those in Northern California?" The
answer is yes, and the main reason is because I see them so
often in contexts other than the university. I am on
several boards with Ed Carter, I am on several boards with
Norton Simon, I am on several boards with Buff [Dorothy
Buffum] Chandler. I see them very frequently socially and
professionally outside the university, and inevitably
university matters come up. I never call a meeting of the
southern regents or anything like that.
MURPHY: "How do you account for the fact that in the
thirties UCLA was considered to have a more radical student
body than Berkeley and that in 1967 the situation is
STADTMAN: This is a little unfair, for you weren't here in
MURPHY: Well, yeah. I have heard a lot about it. "Little
red schoolhouse" comments, and so on. Let me say that I
think--I am here kind of reaching, you know--in the 1930s
UCLA was a kind of rootless institution. It didn't have any
of the traditions of Stanford or Berkeley or Harvard or
Princeton. It was much more like CCNY [City College of the
City University of New York], just a kind of completely
commuter-based academic cafeteria, a low-cost place where
bright people could come who couldn't go elsewhere for
financial or other reasons. Therefore, there was very
little, in a certain sense, to build morale, to get a kind
of sense of unity or spirit. There wasn't even the outlet
for athletics, which is an outlet for energy and enthusiasm,
commitment. And I think that--plus, of course, the external
stimuli of the Great Depression and so on, flirting with
communism, etc. --these two factors made UCLA much like CCNY.
I think the situation to a certain extent is reversed
now, was even in 1957. We had convinced the student body
here and the faculty that we had a chance-- You know, my
speeches in those days [were] , and still are, those of a
great university in the Western tradition: you can achieve
the Berkeley, Stanford, Harvard, Princeton level if you want
to and let's get with it and you are a long way there.
These kinds of positive, sort of morale, psychological
building things I think played some role. And evidence of
that fact that something was happening: a great building
program and so on. Whereas Berkeley had become kind of
static, and what was the thrust--? I mean, athletics was
going down. Berkeley had achieved a plateau, albeit a very
distinguished one. But what was the elan in Berkeley to
which students and large numbers in Berkeley could cling
subconsciously? I don't think there was much there. We had
this elan. You can call it beat Berkeley, beat Michigan,
beat Harvard, etc.
This, however, does lead to numbers seventeen and
eighteen. "How did UCLA avoid being swept into a more
activist response from students during the FSM?" I think
there are two or three reasons for this. I have my own
belief of what happened in Berkeley and some of the reasons
that led to the difficulty. I think a lot of those
conditions didn't prevail here. I think we had a much more
sensitive staff in the dean of students office and all of
the subdeans of students. They are in constant- -were and
are--in constant dialogue with student leadership at every
level. I think my office, not only myself but my own
immediate staff, have understood from the day that I arrived
here that we were going to talk to students, and we have, in
Now, from the beginning, even before FSM, we drew
students, not into the decision-making process, but the
dialogue leading up to the decision making. As you know,
once a year--I established this when I first came--I take
key members of the faculty, administration, and students to
Lake Arrowhead for a weekend and we have an agenda which
relates to some specific set of problems. For example,
years ago, what do we do with the quarter system? How can
we take advantage of that to make more germane our
curriculum? We had students involved from the very
beginning, graduate students and undergraduates. When we
set up our ground rules on the management of political
action, where they could speak and all of these things, I
had the Graduate Students Association and Undergraduate
Students Association hold hearings. Any student for four
days could go and express his views, and then a committee of
those two student associations could put together a summary
of the hearings. They analyzed them and they made
recommendations to me and I discussed them with the faculty,
and in the final drafting three students were involved along
with three faculty and three administrators. I, of course,
made the final approval . So we have had students involved
in the dynamics pretty much from the beginning, and I think
that may be one of the reasons.
Number eighteen I think I have answered. "Do you
believe that the ties of the student body to the chancellor
are stronger at UCLA than they are at Berkeley? If so, how
did they get that way?" I don't know about now, because I
think Chancellor Heyns has done an absolutely superb job. I
think that the record is going to show that he has done one
of the most remarkable educational jobs in the country when
he is finally finished at Berkeley. So I suppose they are
fairly close now, I would hope so. I do think, however,
that students have been closer to our entire administrative
apparatus here, from this office all the way down, than they
were at Berkeley prior to the time that Roger came.
"You were out of the country when President Kerr was
dismissed. Would your reaction to that event have differed
from that of the chancellors had you been here?" I was not
out of the country when President Kerr was dismissed. You
are thinking of a previous episode. I was in SSo Paulo,
Brazil, when Clark Kerr, two years ago I think it was,
announced his intention to resign along with Martin
Meyerson. I got a phone call from the Oakland Tribune ,
which got to me at four o'clock in the morning, got me out
of bed, and the Oakland Tribune fellow said, "President Kerr
has announced that he is going to resign. What have you got
to say about it?" Well, hell, I was half asleep and the
connection all the way from Berkeley to Sao Paulo, Brazil,
was not very good. It took me twenty minutes- -it seemed
twenty, perhaps five--just to understand what he was saying.
I didn't know what had happened. I didn't know whether the
regents had fired him or whether he had resigned or what, so
all I said was "I have no comment. I will make a comment if
necessary when I get back and find out what it is all
about . "
Well, all the other chancellors were here. Predictably
they commented immediately, "It is a tragedy," etc., etc.
The Chronicle fof Higher Education] , for reasons that I will
never know--one for which I will never excuse them--then did
a story which I subsequently saw saying, "President Kerr
announces his intention to resign. Eight chancellors said
terrible, don't do it; Chancellor Murphy said, 'No
comment.'" Well, when I got back--it was a week or two
weeks af terward--the matter was already settled by then,
there was no purpose in making a comment. So I got off to a
bad start on that at that time.
Now, what happened this time-- This happened at the
January meeting of the board of regents. Prior to the fact
that Clark Kerr had gone-- Well, in December Clark Kerr went
to Hong Kong. Prior to his going--! think it was at the
December meeting of the regents, or maybe the November
meeting--he took me aside privately. He said, "Franklin"--
it was after the [gubernatorial] election at least-- "I think
I am in deep, deep trouble. What is your opinion?"
"I will have to tell you that I think you are for
several reasons, " I said. "In the first place, you know,
since June of 1964, I believe, you must have known that a
minority but a very substantial minority of the board are
opposed to your continuing as president." And this was
known. "Frankly, I don't think there has been any
remarkable change in the view of at least a significant
percentage of that minority. Now, " I said, "there is a new
governor. In his campaign he has made it clear that he has
been deeply critical of the management of the university,
and he and the lieutenant governor--who has not been very
vocal on this, but obviously there is some party regularity
here--will be new members, and then I think there will be
two new ex officio or one new ex officio." I said,
"Regardless of whether that becomes a large minority or a
small majority, you have to honestly evaluate whether you
can do this enormously difficult job, which is difficult in
optimum circumstances, knowing that half of your board, more
or less, has lost confidence in you. I think at some point
you have to get that clarified. I just don't see how
anybody, Leonardo da Vinci, can run a big complicated
university system with the kind of heckling that you have
had to put up with from people [who] for whatever reasons,
right or wrong, seem to have lost confidence in you." I
said that "This is a decision that only you can make, but I
think there are other people, of course, that you should
talk to: Harry [R.] Wellman, Charlie [Charles J.] Hitch,
people of this sort, who I think are prepared to give you
very objective, honest advice because they are fond of you."
That was the last I ever talked to him on that or on
any other subject, basically because he went to Hong Kong
and then came all this big flurry, you know, budgets and
this and that. And there came the January meeting of the
board, which was in Berkeley. I arrived at that meeting
with a temperature of 102. I was at the COC [Conference of
Chancellors] , which was a kind of routine chancellors
meeting which we hold the night before. The next day,
this — Incidentally, I had a terrible earache, and that was
what started the thing that put me in the hospital last week
for the operation. I got up the next day, I went to the
regents meetings. I had the obligation to report to the
regents about the most recent discussions in the Commission
on Constitutional Revision, of which I am a member, about
Section IX, Article 9. I had made my notes and went through
the third day-- That was a regents-only meeting, which I
didn't attend, needless to say.
By Friday morning, I was terribly ill, so I went to
Clark, who in retrospect-- You know, Clark was always rather
cool and self-contained, but in retrospect I realize that he
was unusually cool. And I said, "Clark, I have to go home;
I just can't take it any more. My ear is throbbing. I have
an appointment with my doctor to meet me at the airport and
take me right to the hospital. I've got a temperature--"
That morning I had a temperature of 103. I said, "You have
got to make this report for me." I briefed him. He didn't
say a thing to me. Not one word except, "Okay, Franklin."
I put my plane off to the last possible minute. I
stayed through the morning meeting of the regents, and then
the chairman of the board called for a special executive
session of the regents, regents only, and I asked the
president to leave. We had already planned a luncheon for
the chancellors and the president and vice president to talk
about our budget problems upcoming. We all went up to that
conference room on the seventh floor, and my plane was
scheduled to go, I forget when, but I had a quick swipe at a
couple pieces of meat or something and then I said, "I have
to go and get over to the San Francisco airport and down to
the hospital." I went to Clark, shook his hand, and said
good-bye, a routine. He looked up at me, he said good-bye,
and I said, "I will be staying in touch with you" about some
problem with [Ronald W.] Reagan. (He had asked me if I
could assist in getting a dialogue open with Reagan. ) I
said that as soon as I got well I would try and get in touch
with [Philip M.] Battaglia. "And I will see you then." And
he said "Okay. "
I walked out, got on the plane, came home and was met
at the airport, went to the hospital, where they promptly
took cultures and put me on antibiotics and gave me stuff to
go home and go to bed with. I went promptly to sleep- -had
some phenoba'rbital, etc. --and was awakened by my wife, who
said, "By the way, Clark Kerr has been fired." That is the
first that I heard of it. So that is the story.
Now, at this point I went out and turned on the
television, and I got the first inkling of the semantics
battle. Reagan had been interviewed when he first came down
there, and he said that Clark had asked for a vote of
confidence. As a matter of fact, that didn't surprise me
very much in terms of my conversation with Clark in
November. In fact I would have done the same thing. I
think frankly I would have done it a little differently; I
would have resigned out of hand. But that is just a
question of style, the principle is the same. Now I read
Clark's statement in the paper the next morning that he had
done no such thing. Well, at this point I was, needless to
say, concerned on two points: First of all, Andy [Andrew
J.] Hamilton had called me and said that the press wanted a
comment. I said, "I am not going to say a damn thing until
I know what this is all about." So I got ahold of some of
the regents, got ahold of Mrs. Chandler, in fact the one I
finally got hold of. I said, "Please tell me what
happened." And then she told me, and I suddenly realized
here that we had a semantic problem. You ask for a vote of
confidence in so many words, or do you simply say, "I cannot
do my job unless it is clear that I have the confidence of
the regents, the support of the regents"? I am sure that
you will be interviewing Mrs. Chandler and Mr. [Theodore R.]
Meyer; they were there and they were the ones, apparently,
that had the conversation.
I then called Clark to try to tell him how sorry I was
this turned out this way. Nobody answered the phone. I
couldn't get through, just a constant busy signal. So I
tried the next day and I tried for two days, and I finally
called Harry [R.] Wellman and he said, "I don't think Clark
will take your call; he isn't talking to anybody." He had
gone off to his ranch, or something. I wrote him a letter,
a personal letter in my own hand, telling him how sorry I
was, how tragic I felt the whole episode was--like a Russian
novel--starting two and a half years ago.
That was when I began to make some statements. I made
statement number one, that I thought it was a great loss to
the university. I made statement number two, saying that I
thought that the people who would suffer the most were the
ones that either deliberately or inadvertently were
responsible for it, namely those who created the riots,
those members of the faculty at Berkeley who out of some
kind of sense of frustration or naivete fanned the flames.
Because they represented the liberal element of the
university, and nobody had protected freedom and the right
of individuality within the university better than the man
that they had helped destroy. Thirdly, I think I said--and
I believe it--that although Clark Kerr and I had profound
disagreements concerning decentralization and concerning
internal management, nobody had more respect than I for his
overall philosophy about the meaning of a university, what
it was supposed to do, rights of students, faculty, freedom.
Nobody was in fuller agreement with him than I, and that I
thought the record, once the dust had settled, would show
that Kerr had been one of the really outstanding presidents
in the history of the system.
Any further statements that I made ( they weren ' t
statements really) had to do with an attempt to clarify--
which I finally realized was none of my business and so I
stopped talking about it--the question of who was really
responsible. Did the regents fire Kerr or did Kerr ask the
regents to do something to guarantee that he would be fired?
This kind of chicken-or-the-egg kind of thing. My position
here was an attempt to prevent further erosion of the public
image of the regents, because in the long run, I believe the
University of California or the University of California
system- -however you wish to describe it these days--will
depend more than anything else on the constitutional
authority of the regents. I don't believe they will retain
that constitutional authority unless they retain the
confidence of the people in the state of California. So in
terms of the objective, non-ad hominem issue, I have done my
level best in the last several months to try to build up the
confidence of the public in the regents. That is a very
complicated, long answer to a simple question.
STADTMAN: It is a good answer.
MURPHY: "I am told that you would favor reorganizing the
university into a regional system. Is that so? If so,
why?" That is not so. Let me make my position about the
governance of the university very clear. I believe that
there should be one board of regents for the system. I
believe the board should have full constitutional
independence and authority. I believe that there is a
possibility of reshaping the board, but I think that is
unimportant, basically, whether the terms are sixteen years
or twelve years, whether there is ex officio or not ex
officio. There should be one board with full constitutional
authority. I believe that there should be one president
with a staff. I believe that that office should primarily
be a planning, policy-making office, a planning, policy-
making, budget-making, postaudit analytical office, serving
the regents and serving the system. I believe that that
office and only that office should be in contact with the
legislature and with the governor and with the Coordinating
Council on Higher Education. I believe that once budgets
are agreed to and money is distributed, there should be
maximum local authority to spend that money, transfer money
in and out of budget lines, etc., and there should be
maximum decentralization of operations within the policy and
within the budget that has been made and with a full
recognition that there will be a post-audit. And if a
fellow can't do the job, he goes out, but you don't tell him
how do it, the chancellor I mean.
Now, I believe that the regents must organize
themselves, however, in a way to make themselves much more
familiar with each of the campuses. Let me be specific. If
Roger Heyns were president of the University of Michigan, he
would be meeting with his board at Ann Arbor to talk about
Ann Arbor once every month. Berkeley is more complicated
than Ann Arbor. Roger Heyns meets with the regents in a
once-removed relationship and in a relationship where he is
in direct dialogue with the regents about Berkeley's
problems at best thirty minutes a months, the same with me,
and this is nonsense, just nonsense. The regents don't
really know what is going on on the campuses, in the subtle
in-between nuances. How do you start a dialogue with the
regents about a little cloud that I see on the horizon at
UCLA that a year from now could lead to a crisis, do it
confidentially and carefully and analytically, so that when
you make the final decision you make it with the sense of
the problem rather than just off the top of your head, the
way the regents make their decisions these days about so
I hope that somehow in this organization you could
create a pattern-- I will give you one example, and this is
merely an example. The regents could break themselves down
into groups of, let us say, three- -two or three. Each of
them for a period of no longer than three years would be
that subcommittee, the subcommittee of Berkeley, the
subcommittee of UCLA, the subcommittee of Riverside. Now,
they would shift every three years so that no one over the
time could have a proprietary interest in any one campus.
The regents would then appoint from the local region, let us
take UCLA, to the subcommittee of UCLA six distinguished
citizens of Los Angeles. Now, the regents' official
meetings where they [conduct] de jure business at the
university would be every other month. Every other month
the regents would meet somewhere and deal with the things
that they deal with now. Every other month the two or three
regents on the subcommittee with the seven other people
would meet on the Berkeley campus or the UCLA campus for two
days, and here the chancellor or the president or the vice
presidents, or however you want it, would talk about their
specific problems. Then when they came together on the
every other month basis, as specific proposals came in to
the regents there would not only be the statewide
administration, the campus administration, but at least two
or three regents who were thoroughly familiar with this
problem, or whatever the issues. Now, the campus committee
would have no legal authority, but it would be of such a
distinguished type that what the chairman of the board of
the Bank of America, the chairman of Lockheed, the head of
AFL-CIO [American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial
Organizations] , the editor of the Los Angeles Times -- What
they had to say obviously would have tremendous influence,
and this would be input. And, furthermore, it would be a
tremendous public relations thing. You draw in the life of
the university to the leadership of the state of California,
that now is kept out to a certain sense. Now, there are
some problems, I recognize. But let me point out that if a
regent over a period of sixteen years-- Say three or four
years-- Let's use four years. At the end of sixteen years
he would at least be intimately familiar with four campuses
of the university. Today, few regents are intimately
familiar with any campuses.
STADTMAN: And because of certain similarities of campus
problems, their acquaintance would be even deeper still.
MURPHY: Yes, sir. But if you call that a regional system,
then okay, but it is by no means splitting the university
STADTMAN: What I had reference to was something like the
MURPHY: No. The furthest I would be willing to go is the
thing that I just described, or some counterpart to it.
"What do you believe are the most important
achievements of your chancellorship?" I have said something
"Chancellors tend to react alike to questions of
university decentralization?" They do these days.
STADTMAN: Do you think this is due largely to what has
happened since 1951?
MURPHY: I believe so. That is a prejudiced answer, but I
believe so. At least I can tell you that there was by no
means-- Well, to be quite honest with you, when we started
to talk about this in 1960, it isn't that chancellors spoke
against it; they just didn't open their mouths.
STADT^4AN: Tell me this. About the time of his dismissal,
wasn't it true that President Kerr had gone just about as
far as anybody had asked him to go in decentralization?
Except in terms--! understand there were semantic problems--
of the language of it. Aside from that--
MURPHY: Yes, I think it is fair to say that there is very
little decentralization left to be done. There are some
nuts and bolts still to be dealt with, but there is very
little decentralization left, proper decentralization left,
after last January.
STADTMAN: Isn't one of the things that we have to be
careful of in the next six months or a year, with a new
president coming on, is the regents really assuming by
necessity a large share of the responsibility of
administration of the university? Of this battle losing
MURPHY: Yes, sir, very definitely, and I think any man
coming in would be well advised to get thoroughly briefed
before he accepted the job and make some written conditions
just on this point. I think if we lag back and go back to
these old days when regents were tampering and trying to
evaluate $300 transfers and all this nonsense, it would be a
tragedy for the university. I personally will fight the
regents as hard as any president, or anybody else, to
prevent this from happening, because I have been in this job
long enough to know that if there is any backing up on the
decentralization thing, I can't do the job. You were
willing to stay even though it was tough when you could see
a ray of hope- -I mean that the movement was positive- -but
when you see retrogression when it isn't even fully
completed yet, then this would be a very negative thing. I
don't think fellows like Heyns or Galbraith or myself would
stay under those circumstances.
STADT^4AN: If you have a two o'clock appointment- -
MURPHY: "What would you consider to be the essence of the
1967 spirit of UCLA?" Well, that we are on the go, that the
distinguished university in worldwide terms is not a cliche
but is possible of achievement, and we are closer to it than
we realized. There is, I think, a sense of vitality, a
sense of pride, growing pride, and a sense of self-
"How would you like to have it regarded by the people
of the state?" As a distinguished university that is
contributing to an important part of the life of the state.
"By the rest of the university system?" I would like
to have it thought of as, well, as a distinguished
Are there any other questions?
STADTMAN: There is only one question: You are on the
record publicly as saying that you are not interested in the
MURPHY: That is correct.
STADTMAN: There is a general concern now that this position
is going to be eroded. Do you sense that this is a
MURPHY: I think anybody who takes the job on the theory
that he is taking a classical university presidency is going
to be disappointed, because it can never be that. You see,
this is no longer a university as Harvard is a university.
This is a unique, unprecedented system of higher education
really made up of nine universities, one day twelve. The
president of the University of California has, therefore,
got to be quite as unprecedented as the system itself if the
two are to match. Now, I think what one is talking about is
a man who does not bear the relationship that Nathan Pusey
bears to Harvard, but more a man who bears the relationship
that the minister of higher education of West Germany bears
to the universities of West Germany. It is a ministerial
job rather than an administrative job. Policy-making,
budget-making, analytical, planning, etc.
STADT^4AN: How about statesmanship?
MURPHY: Above everything else statesmanship. Communicating
the importance and consequences of a great system of public
higher education to the people of the state. It may be the
most important statesman education job in America, because
the way the University of California has gone from a single-
campus university to a system of higher education is the way
many others have got to go as well, so it really has great
consequences for the whole country. Now, this means that
the job is quite as exciting in its way as it used to be
when Benjamin Ide Wheeler was there- -maybe much more
exciting- -but it has to be a job that is accepted in terms
of what the job is. Now, my position is clear: I am in
higher education because I like the interplay of the human
relationship. I am not an office fellow basically; I like
to deal with students, with faculty, to take little things,
start them and watch them grow, like a program of African
studies. My interest in higher education is the campus
relationship. The job in Berkeley is a corporate statesman
job, like going into the president's cabinet, as it were.
It is in the office, and this does not appeal to me. If I
were wanting to take a corporate job I would go into
industry, I would suspect, because this fascinates me, too,
for other reasons. It is not, therefore, that I think it is
a bad job; it is just that I am a round peg and it is a
STADTMAN: I get it.
MURPHY: And may I say frankly, since this is only for the
archives, I have not only stated my disinterest in the
presidency publicly, but I am now prepared to say, since the
Chronicle wrote about it, that early on I wrote a firm
letter to the committee of the regents seeking a new
president saying that if I were on the list, I would hope
they would take me off, because I could conceive of no
circumstances in which I felt I could accept the appointment
STADTMAN: Not in any context of vision of weakness--
MURPHY: On the contrary, I have said that they should
strengthen and build the image of this role by all possible